Marine Corps awards contract for 60,000 infantry handheld radios

QUANTICO MARINE BASE, Va., 10 April 2006. U.S. Marine Corps leaders, are set to buy 60,000 secure handheld infantry radios in attempts to meet emerging battlefield requirements while waiting for the badly delayed Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS).

QUANTICO MARINE BASE, Va., 10 April 2006. U.S. Marine Corps leaders, are set to buy 60,000 secure handheld infantry radios in attempts to meet emerging battlefield requirements while waiting for the badly delayed Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS).

The Marine Corps Systems Command at Quantico Marine Base, Va., awarded a $76 million contract to Motorola of Columbia, Md., April 6 for 60,000 Integrated Intra Squad Radios, otherwise known as the IISR.

The Marines will use the IISR to for small-unit infantry operations to replace and augment existing radios that are either becoming obsolete or are not interoperable with other Marine Corps radio equipment. The IISR is a form-fit radio that will be replaced in 2013 by the JTRS cluster 5 spiral 2 radio.

The Marine Corps inventory of radios includes the AN/PRC-68, AN/PRC-94, and the Personal Role Radio (PRR), yet none was able to fulfill the need of a secure handheld radio, Marine leaders say. The AN/PRC-68 and AN/PRC-94 are being retired due to age.

As a result, the existing infrastructure consists of locally purchased, commercially available handheld radios that are not interoperable with the Marine Corps combat net radios, officials say. The IISR is expected to consolidate and exceeds legacy capabilities while reducing the combat load of the individual marine and small unit and vastly reduces operating costs.

Motorola will do the work in Schaumburg, Ill., and should be finished by April 2011. The contract number is 67854-06-D-7022.

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