Officials of the Army Contracting Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., announced a $988 million contract Wednesday to Exelis (NYSE:XLS) in Fort Wayne, Ind.; General Dynamics (NYSE:GD) C4 Systems in Scottsdale, Ariz.; Thales Defense & Security Inc. in Clarksburg, Md.; and the Harris Corp. (NYSE:HRS) RF Communications segment in Rochester, N.Y., for the SRW Appliqué Radio Systems program.
Award of the W Appliqué Radio Systems had been delayed for several months, and had been expected by last summer.
This initiative will add the Soldier Radio Waveform (SRW) software application of the Joint Tactical Radio Systems program (JTRS) to JTRS vehicle-mount radio systems, and will transform the VRC-92 into a single-channel, vehicle-mounted software-defined radio for Army Brigade Combat Teams.
Army officials will buy SRW Appliqué Radio Systems in separate orders from the four companies over the next five years, with five one-year options. Army officials say they plan to buy about 5,000 SRW Appliqué Radio Systems over the next 10 years.
This enhancement will add a data-transmission module to the SINCGARS radio to enable updated VRC-92 communications systems to exchange voice and data between foot soldiers using the JTRS Rifleman Radio and higher-level commands on Army tactical networks.
Army leaders intend the SRW Appliqué Radio Systems program as an interim tactical communications solution until the two-channel, vehicle-mounted component of the JTRS Handheld, Manpack, Small Form Fit (HMS) family of radios is ready to be introduced to deployed forces.
The SRW Appliqué Radio Systems program is considered an inexpensive alternative to a manpack radio. Each SRW Appliqué is expected to cost the Army about $20,000, compared to $78,000 for a two-channel digital manpack, officials say.
Funding and number of radios to be provided by each of the four SRW Appliqué Radio Systems contractors will be determined with each order, and the program should wind up by April 2024.
For more information contact Exelis online at www.exelisinc.com; General Dynamics C4 Systems at www.gdc4s.com; Harris RF Communications at http://rf.harris.com; Thales Defense & Security at www.thalescomminc.com; or the Army Contracting Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground at www.acc.army.mil/contractingcenters/acc-apg.