BATTLESPACE EUROSATORY REPORT
By Adam Baddeley, Deputy Editor, BATTLESPACE
Battlespace walked the exhibition floor at Eurosatory to bring you this report on just what is happening in the communications market today
HARRIS CHANGE THE WAY THEY ADDRESS THE WORLD
Harris are reorganising the way the world sees them and their products. In the future, solutions now offered directly to international customers from the company’s Government Communications Systems Division will be marketed and presented through Harris RF Communications. The first example of this new partnership are discussions with the Dutch Milsatcom Office who have recently issued an request for an AEHF terminal for onboard four De Zeven Provincien Class Air Defence and Command Frigates and at the Anchor station at Lauwersmeer. The Dutch will use the eventual winner of the US Navy’s NMT programme between Harris GCSD and Raytheon but is working with both contenders now to reduce the procurement schedule in later stages.
Another GCSD product being profiled at Eurosatory is the High Band RF unit (HRFU) and accompanying Highband Networking Waveform) HNW both being being spun out of the US WIN-T programme. This solution provides C and Ku band high capacity communication both at the quick halt and on the move. Tested at the WIN-T DT/OT late in 2005, the HNW has demonstrated a 15 nodes network with data rates of up to 23Mbps and range of up to 24km. This is expected to exceed 40km and 100Mbps for ground-to-ground communication when the capability is further developed. Vehicle fits include both a mast and hull mounted version, with the radome on a Stryker of the latter being approximately 30cm high. The HRFU and HNW are both candidates for international markets once WIN-T is complete.
Harris is also continuing to progress with the next iteration of the Falcon III series. A two-channel manpack is being developed to follow the PRC-152. The radio is on schedule to be ready for US use in the first half of next year with an export variant using Citadel encryption expected at the end of 2007.
Harris have not yet secured an international order for the 30-512MHz PRC-152, but it moves closer with the receipt in late May of National Security Agency clearance for export of the radio to NATO counties. There are however requirements that any sales must serve to improve and aid interoperability with either NATO or the US. The HF PRC-150 Falcon II also received NATO SECAN security clearance in May. Harris has received requests from ten countries for the PRC-152 with a further three for the PRC-150.
Other new products on show in Paris included the RF-6920 C2NE-CNR Awareness application, which is a PDA based implementation of the Northrop Grumman BMS software, adapted to the Falcon II waveform and sold to Lithuania in 2004.
A number of companies were preparing their solutions for the FIST Medium Range Radio requirement now being prepared as part of the SRD-lite ready for FIST Main Gate in 2007. Under current plans that have yet to receive Ministerial approval the full SRD is now expected to be delivered in 2012. In terms of communications capability, the main difference between the two is that while the V1 and V2 trials provided the required fidelity of information for Main Gate at the section and platoon level communications the detailed technical data to support the high capacity linking the platoon with the company –roughly ranges of 6Km – were not gleaned from the lengthy assessment phase trials process. Next year, under the predicted SRD Lite, the FIST system communications will consist of a MRR Platoon net with individual ranges of around 1.5km in real world conditions with the PRC-354 remaining the platoon to company link. Under current plans the MRR link will be a UK Confidential network.
The backdrop for the MRR requirement was experience of the FIST V2 trials last November in Scotland. In these a Cobham Defence Communications radio the CPR-31