Title: Norway Gets FORNSAT Collection Capability On Par With NSA’s
Release Date: 2018-03-01
Document Date: 2006-02-09
Description: This 2006 post from the internal NSA newsletter SIDToday describes the opening of VICTORYGARDEN, a “state-of-the-art FORNSAT site”: see the Intercept article Norway Used NSA Technology for Potentially Illegal Spying, 1 March 2018.
Document: DYNAMIC PAGE -- HIGHEST POSSIBLE CLASSIFICATION IS
TOP SECRET // SI / TK // REL TO USA AUS CAN GBR NZL
(S) Norway Gets FORNSAT Collection Capability On Par With NSA's
FAD's Engineering Services Office (DP31)
Run Date: 02/09/2006
(S) On December 15th, 2005, General Hagen, Director Norwegian Intelligence Service (NIS),
accepted and declared Initial Operating Capability (IOC) of VICTORYGARDEN and the associated
FORNSAT collection and processing capabilities. IOC marks the successful completion of a $33
million dollar NIS-funded effort under the accommodation-buy program. NIS now has a national
FORNSAT collection capability comparable to an NSA FORNSAT site.
(S//SI) MG Hagen, Director NIS, accepting delivery of VICTORYGARDEN from
Chief of DP3 (standing at left)
(S) Four years ago, NIS approached NSA about using the accommodation-buy process to obtain
a FORNSAT SIGINT capability. Two years ago, on behalf of NIS, FAD's Technical Services Group
entered into contract for three 18-meter and one 13-meter COMSAT receive-only antennas,
associated RF and IF switching and front-end equipment. Capabilities include:
• Three 18-meter C/KU band antennas providing concurrent dual polarity feeds for each
band with redundant RF electronics.
• One 13-meter with similar capabilities and integration of two existing 13m C/L band
antennas already installed for INMARSAT collection.
• All RF is downconverted to L-band at the antenna.
• Fiber Optic connectivity between all antennas and the site. Additional fiber optic
connectivity to existing antennas at the nearby Norwegian NATO communication provides
additional satellite coverage.
• 48/64 non-blocking RF switch expandable in 16 input/output segments
• 128/128 non-blocking IF switch
• L-band downconverters, modern satellite modems and DVBS wideband modems
• Integrated M&C system permitting control of the entire site from single desktop at site or
(S//SI) Two of Norway's new 18-meter COMSAT antennas
(S) The SIGINT processing portion of the system was system engineered by FAD with support
from CES , RFO and other NSA offices. Taking advantage of being able to design the system
from a clean sheet of paper, the engineering team was able to use the latest technology and
capabilities available. By multiplexing E1 and/or E3 outputs from the VICTORYGARDEN modems
into an STM-1, VICTORYGARDEN takes advantage of selection capabilities developed by NSA
Special Source Operations ( SSO ). Circuit-switched communications are then processed by
FENESTRA while packet and C2C communications are processed by WEALTHYCLUSTER. VSAT
communications processed by FALLOWHAUNT target Hughes TES, Hughes PES and Skylinx DDS.
Follow-on processing systems process and forward FAX and Voice communications to NUCLEON
at NIS Headquarters for analysis. OCTAVE manages tasking for appropriate systems and
CADENCE manages dictionaries in BLACKNIGHTs.
(S) The "technical" piece of the system is only part of a successful program. Operational success
shows a system's true value. Early in the program, the joint NSA and NIS program management
team realized that NIS's limited FORNSAT operational experience needed to be addressed. The
Office of Russia, RFO FORNSAT Division, and others experienced in the analysis of FORNSAT
signals, provided briefings and overview training related to SS7 communications, call chaining,
satellite databasing (ROADBED) and dictionary management in early 2005.
(S) The Yakima Research Station (YRS) hosted a visit in January 2005. In March 2005, YRS
personnel flew to Norway to meet with site personnel to discuss signal analysis in a COMSAT
environment. The result was YRS recommending an extensive signal analysis position. In
November 2005, YRS returned to Norway to train NIS signal analysts on a dedicated signal
analysis position that included nearly all software tools used at YRS. NIS has stated that this
training conducted in a live signal environment was invaluable. NIS and NSA have agreed to
have NIS and YRS analysts continue collaboration with future visits to both sites.
(S) In closing, VICTORYGARDEN provides the Norwegian Intelligence Service a state-of-the-art
FORNSAT site. VICTORYGARDEN includes capabilities previously not released outside of NSA. A
partnership between the new NIS FORNSAT site and the Yakima Research Station and the NSA
FORNSAT organization exists to help ensure that VICTORYGARDEN is operationally successful.
NSA/FAD is very encouraged that the prospects for success are very bright, and we are firmly
convinced that we have only begun to see future possibilities to benefit both our nations and the
(S//SI) New Norwegian FORNSAT site (VICTORYGARDEN)
(U//FOUO) This article is reprinted from the Foreign Affairs Digest , January edition (originally
titled "VICTORYGARDEN IOC"). For background on VICTORYGARDEN, see an earlier article .
"(U//FOUO) SIDtoday articles may not be republished or reposted outside NSANet
without the consent of S0121 (DL sid comms)."
DYNAMIC PAGE -- HIGHEST POSSIBLE CLASSIFICATION IS
TOP SECRET // SI / TK // REL TO USA AUS CAN GBR NZL
DERIVED FROM: NSA/CSSM 1-52, DATED 08 JAN 2007 DECLASSIFY ON: 20320108