U.S. defense contractor Raytheon has announced that it received a $48 million engineering services contract to support the integration and qualification of hand-held devices into platform-mounted WiFi systems secured up to secret.
Loaded with situational awareness and mission planning applications, the mobile devices will improve air-to-ground communication between combat teams, enhancing situational awareness as the mission unfolds.
“We’re helping aircrews and ground forces better communicate and collaborate in real time on the battlefield,” said Matt Gilligan, vice president at Raytheon’s Intelligence, Information and Services business. “Right now Blackhawk crews and dismounted soldiers rely heavily on voice communications during a mission, and when dynamics are changing in the air and on the ground minute by minute, that’s a huge challenge.”
The contract is part of the U.S. Army’s Air Soldier System (Air SS), the service’s effort to equip their rotary-wing aircrews with wearable electronics that increase their mission effectiveness and survivability.
Under the contract, Raytheon will load mission applications on commercial off-the-shelf phones and tablets to allow air and ground users to access and share current weather updates, friendly force trackers, and secure text messages.
— Raytheon (@Raytheon) October 7, 2019