05 Jul 05. BAE Systems has been down-selected as preferred supplier for the first increment of the FALCON information infrastructure programme under a contract worth £180m. (See: BATTLESPACE UPDATE Vol.7 ISSUE 15, 15th April 2005, FALCON CREEPS TOWARDS MAIN GATE)
Defence Procurement Minister Lord Drayson said: “Detailed negotiations will now take place with BAE Systems Insyte before we are in a position to take a final decision on awarding a contract.
“We envisage Falcon as a key part of the network-enabled operations that will help clear the fog of war and ensure the British Army dominates the battlefields of the future. Our studies have shown that better and faster use of combat information will give our Forces a major advantage over any likely opponents.
The Falcon network will permit transmission of large amounts of data, including real time video, between Army Headquarters. Falcon will be deployed to and operated by Royal Signals Units and will allow significant operator reductions over the existing Ptarmigan system.
Falcon will replace a range of in-service systems such as Ptarmigan, Euromux, the RAF Transportable Telecommunications System and Deployed Local Area Network (RTTS/DLAN)
“Falcon, together with the Bowman tactical communications system and the Cormorant command system – now in service with British Forces – will give our Forces that crucial advantage.
“Falcon will underpin British Industry’s position at the forefront of communications technology worldwide. Subject to successful contract negotiations with the company it will create or sustain hundreds of jobs in Christchurch and across the UK.”
Falcon will have more than 50 times the data throughput capacity of the systems it replaces. It will provide a huge leap in the capability of the Army’s communications network and reduce the number of Royal Signals vehicles and personnel needed to support a major headquarters.
FALCON will provide the British Armed Forces with a new high capacity, secure information system infrastructure capability at the operational and tactical levels of command that can be deployed rapidly by air into any theatre of operations.
FALCON meets the requirements for greatly improved data throughput, multi-level security, mobility and manpower efficiencies, and will operate in conjunction with Skynet 5, Cormorant and Bowman, providing a wide area system binding together and reinforcing tactical communications in the theatre of operations. It is a crucial component of Network Enabled Capability, a central element in the new chapter of the UK’s Strategic Defence Review.
The intellectual capital gained from the development of FALCON will be an important part of the UK defence industrial base and the programme is a key element of BAE Systems UK strategy.
BAE Systems Integrated System Technologies (Insyte) and team partners Thales, Cisco, Dytecna and Flagship will now work closely with the UK MoD to prepare the main gate business case for the main production programme.
Clive Richardson Managing Director of Insyte said: “BAE Systems and its partners understand the battlespace and will take that experience into the transition to FALCON. The MoD has run a very thorough and fair competition and we look forward to working together to deliver the capability to the UK Armed Forces”.
Thales UK is a key partner in the BAE Systems team that has been down-selected as preferred supplier for the first increment of the FALCON information infrastructure programme.
Thales UK’s joint systems business in Wells is supplying the Transmission Subsystem (TxSS) and security architecture components as an integrated package. The TxSS is a best of breed solution, which provides a high degree of operational flexibility. The TRC4000 34Mbps Band IV line of sight radio is complemented by the Ultra GRC-245 Band I/III+ radio. Both these radios offer an excellent combination of range, bandwidth and functionality, together with impres