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Boeing delivers first JTRS Cluster 1 Radios for Future Combat Systems Program

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January 31, 2006

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February 1, 2006 Boeing and teammates BAE Systems, Rockwell Collins and Northrop Grumman have delivered the first seven Joint Tactical Radio System Cluster 1 (JTRS C1) radios, as scheduled, to the U.S. Army's Future Combat Systems (FCS) program. Additional units will be delivered to the FCS program in increments, to bring the total number of radios to 50 by late (Northern Hemisphere) summer. The software-defined radios will now undergo integration by the FCS program at several sites across the country and ultimately bring Internet-like capabilities to the nation's warfighters while they're on the move. The Cluster 1 radios are designed to provide networking capabilities to the battlefield. They provide the warfighter with new, secure capabilities, which include the transmission/receipt of real-time information -- both voice and text, the ability to stream live video and audio, draw and share maps, conduct Net-Meetings and use Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP).

"This is the first of several deliveries we'll be making to the FCS program this year," said Ralph Moslener, program manager for the Boeing Anaheim-based JTRS C1 program. "A significant milestone for both the JTRS and FCS programs, this brings us one step closer to our ultimate goal of placing these transformational radios in the hands of the nation's warfighters as quickly as possible."

The Cluster 1 radios are designed to provide networking capabilities to the battlefield. They provide the warfighter with new, secure capabilities, which include the transmission/receipt of real-time information -- both voice and text, the ability to stream live video and audio, draw and share maps, conduct Net-Meetings and use Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP).

"Today's JTRS radio delivery marks a significant step forward for the FCS program as we begin replacing computer emulators with the first 'live' JTRS radios and start testing the passage of information through the radios, as opposed to relying on simulation," said Don DePree, director, FCS C4ISR integrated product team. "Some of the radios will also be used in support of FCS experimentation activities later this year, providing crucial user feedback that will be incorporated back into the program thereby dramatically reducing risk."

The JTRS software-defined radios contain support infrastructure for the operation of Software Communication Architecture (SCA) compliant waveforms. The initial waveform set includes the single-channel ground air radio system waveform and the Wideband Networking Waveform-increment 1 (WNW), which uses common Internet Protocol-based networking concepts, as well as new mobile ad-hoc networking technology to integrate voice, video and data communications. The JTRS units provided to FCS are upgradeable. Operational software and waveform upgrades will be provided in the future as they become available.

The JTRS radio configuration has been successfully operated in multiple demonstrations over the past six months. These demonstrations have shown multi-channel operation, simultaneous waveform operation, interoperability with existing "legacy" radios, end-to-end radio operation, and multiple legacy waveform operation.

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About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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