Gigabit Ethernet Data Multiplex System installed on Navy destroyer for shipboard networking

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif.-Engineers from the Argon ST subsidiary of the Boeing Co. in Huntington Beach, Calif., have installed a Gigabit Ethernet Data Multiplex System (GEDMS) on the guided missile destroyer USS Spruance (DDG 111) to transfer data via a reliable, redundant, mission-critical network backbone for U.S. Navy surface warships.

The Spruance is one of the Navy's newest Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, and is the first destroyer to be outfitted with the GEDMS shipboard network. Although named for famed World War II Navy Adm. Raymond A. Spruance, DDG 111 is not part of the Navy's old Spruance-class destroyers, the last of which was decommissioned in 2005. Adm. Spruance commanded Navy forces during the Battle of Midway in 1942.

The new ship is designed to engage enemy aircraft, surface ships, and submarines. GEDMS, the most recent upgrade to the Data Multiplex System (DMS) networks, offers enhanced network communication capabilities by providing an IP-based backbone that supports multimedia services such as video and data, Boeing officials say.

The guided missile destroyer USS Spruance, shown above, will receive high-speed optical communications networking.
The guided missile destroyer USS Spruance, shown above, will receive high-speed optical communications networking.

GEDMS increases a surface ship's capacity to support data transfer for the upgraded hull, mechanical, and electrical systems introduced into the fleet with DDG 111. Additional benefits include manpower reduction and increased crew safety by using video and sensors for monitoring of remote or confined spaces, Boeing officials say.

In September 1989, Boeing delivered the first DMS system to the Navy for installation aboard the USS Arleigh Burke, the namesake for the DDG 51 class destroyer. As the DDG new ship construction continued, the DMS was upgraded to a Fiber Optic Data Multiplex System to support evolving needs. In August 2010, the Navy replaced the copper-based DMS systems installed on the Arleigh Burke and the USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53) with the high-performance GEDMS, the latest variant in the DMS family of networks.

The Navy completed sea trials and testing of GEDMS on the Spruance in March. The ship's home port will be San Diego.


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February 2014
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