Persistent radios for US Army WMD teams
Persistent Systems will supply more than 950 MPU5 radios to the US Army National Guard's Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Teams (WMD-CSTs) under a $8.9 million contract announced on 13 September.
The contract is in support of the US Army's Unified Command Suite (UCS) Program of Record, which aims to provide interoperable communications between military, federal, state and local emergency response elements on the scene of an incident.
The UCS is a self-contained communications vehicle that can either be driven to, or be air-lifted by C-130, to an incident location. The MPU5 radios enable a high-speed communication network to be established on-the-fly, allowing CST personnel to operate across an incident area while remaining connected both to the vehicle and to each other.
The MANET element of Persistent's solution creates a vast, self-forming, self-healing radio network that does not require outside infrastructure to work. Should a node drop out of the network, sensor data collected by a CST member will be routed another way.
Using the MPU5 reduces the number of relay radios needed to push signals over and around obstacles. The radios provide push-to-talk audio, video encoding, and an integrated Android computing environment that allows the installation of third-party applications. It is a 6W 3x3 radio which provides long range and throughput exceeding 100mbps, enabling national guard CSTs to network their sensors and transmit data collected in the field to the UCS vehicle and then on to a national lab for analysis.
Persistent has started delivering the radios and expects to make another delivery of 500 radios to the UCS programme this month.
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