Armada’s monthly round-up of all the latest military communications news in the product, programme and operational domains.
New Codan DTC Radios
As the March edition of Armada’s MilComms Newsletter was going to press, Codan and Domo Tactical Communications (DTC) unveiled their new Sentry Mesh 6161-L tactical radio. A press release announcing the news said the new radio uses the companies’ Mobile Ad Hoc Networking (MANET) Mesh waveform. Providing up to two watts of output power, the transceiver has two-by-two multiple-in/multiple-out channels. Having these independent transmit/receive channels “maximizes throughput and avoids drop-outs,” the press release continued. This is useful in urban areas where buildings and objects can reflect signals in unpredictable ways causing interference. Neil McSparron, DTC’s chief technical officer, told Armada that the first released Sentry Mesh 6161-L variant uses a 1.2 gigahertz/GHz to 1.7GHz waveband. This “is favoured by many military customers as it is relatively free from public cellular networks and offers a good balance of waveform penetration without requiring large antenna size.” In the future, variants of the radio transmitting in ultra-high frequency (300 megahertz to three gigahertz) will become available. Between two and over 100 radios can be accommodated on a single flat mesh network, Mr. McSparron continued. These can share voice and data traffic at rates of ten kilobits-per-second/kbps to 200kbps. “The same radio can also be used to share high-definition digital video internet protocol streams greater than ten megabits-per-second.” The radio’s transmission bandwidths range between 1.2MHz and 20MHz.
On 15th March Silvus Technologies unveiled its Spectrum Dominance suite of Low Probability of Interception/Detection (LPI/D) and anti-jamming capabilities. A press release said these enable secure and electronic warfare-resilient mesh communications networks at the tactical edge. The company is providing its AN/PRC-169 radios for the army’s Capability Set-23 Integrated Tactical Network iteration. These transceivers are based on the company’s StreamCaster radios. They carry the Silvus Technologies’ MN-MIMO multiple-in, multiple-out waveform. Spectrum Dominance allows “operators to achieve mission objectives even in the presence of multi-tiered electronic attack.”
Spectrum Dominance is “a software licensable extension to the Silvus proprietary MN-MIMO waveform,” Jimi Henderson, the company’s vice president of sales told Armada. Spectrum Dominance features can be licenced individually, or as a complete suite of LPI/D and anti-jam capabilities. “Upon detection of interference, operators can activate multiple Spectrum Dominance anti-jam resiliency techniques such as Mobile Ad-Hoc Networking Interference Avoidance (MAN-IA). This moves the entire network to the cleanest frequency to avoid interference without user intervention,” says Mr. Henderson. “Another Anti-Jam resiliency feature is MANET Interference Cancellation (MAN-IC). This utilises Eigen beam nulling to suppress the offending interfering signal, without suppressing your own radio frequency signal.” AN/PRC-169s fielded by the US Army for CS-23 will include Spectrum Dominance interference avoidance and cancellation capabilities, Mr. Henderson continued.
by Dr. Thomas Withington