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30 Aug 13. USAF completes Ultra’s TACPOD communications relay node evaluation. Ultra Electronics Advanced Tactical Systems’ tactical airborne command, control, communications and intelligence pod (TACPOD) has completed flight testing on a US Air Force’s (USAF) remotely piloted aircraft. Carried out at an undisclosed location, the US Government testing represents the conclusion of the company’s development and production contract to support beyond line of sight (BLOS) command and control for the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC). Awarded in March 2012, the contract covers supply of multiple, complete TACPOD systems, each featuring a two-pod mission set, along with ground support and ancillary equipment. Ultra TACPOD project manager Bryan Jimenez said that the successful flight test demonstrates the TACPOD capability and its readiness for deployment. Ultra Electronics Advanced Tactical Systems president John McAlonan said the TACPOD represents a continuation of the company’s commitment to offer solutions that help customers integrate, share and act on time-critical information. A previous TACPOD configuration also completed similar flight testing in December 2011. Weighing 120lbs, TACPOD is an advanced pod designed to enhance communication between tactical edge users and theatre commanders on a range of manned and unmanned aircraft. The pod specifically connects forces on the ground, in convoys, command centres, ships and aircraft, by establishing a network that extends line of sight and beyond line of sight communications for voice, video and data in the battlefield. TAPCOD uses its battlefield integrated gateway for tactical exchange (BIGTEX) software to relay, bridge, translate, distribute and manage both existing and traditional voice, video and data over widely dispersed and often austere environments. (Source: airforce-technology.com)

30 Aug 13. Army, Air Force, DISA share upgraded routers, saving $1bn. The Defense Department says that with the Army, Air Force and Defense
Information Systems Agency sharing and upgrading routers, the services will save more than $1bn in future costs, FedScoop reports. The upgraded routers will increase speeds and security for the services. The Army says its IT budget will drop $785m between fiscal years 2015 and 2019 as it consolidates hundreds of dispersed network security stacks into 15 regional security stacks and upgrades its routers. The Air Force will share those regional stacks and migrate to the Army’s new routers, avoiding roughly $1.2bn in long-term costs. (Source: Open Source Information Report/FedBiz Daily)

03 Sep 13. DRS Technologies, Inc., a Finmeccanica Company, announced that its Network and Imaging Systems group has been awarded a competitively bid Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) three-year contract with a potential total value of $455m for a modular family of computers and display systems that are expected to form the heart of next-generation network computing technology for the U.S. Army. The Mounted Family of Computing Systems (MFoCS) will be installed on ground vehicles and weapons platforms to provide modular computing capabilities across the services. Under the IDIQ contract, DRS will provide dismountable tablets, platform-computing servers, docking stations, interconnecting cables, installation kits, and three sizes of ruggedized sunlight-readable touch-screen display units for more than 40 types of ground vehicles and weapons platforms. The three-year contract, executed by the Army and available for the Marine Corps and other services to acquire systems through it as well, includes options for two one-year extensions.

04 Sep 13. When high-end graphics & multiple display utilities become a must for field applications, Seahawk is the right solution to satisfy the needs. Fully configured with Int

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