14 May 2015

Army weighs comm systems for helicopters

Michael Hardy
April 13, 2015 

The US Army is seeking a way to improve communications between its helicopter fleet and soldiers on the ground, according to a report in Defense News. To that end, it is examining two programs:

The Small Airborne Networking Radio (SANR) program would instantaneously transmit ground soldier location information to maps in cockpits overhead to minimize friendly-fire incidents.

Link 16 is a military tactical data exchange network used by the US and NATO nations. It supports the secure exchange of text messages and imagery, data, and provides two channels of digital voice. The Army is deciding now how to proceed with a requirement for Link 16 in helicopters.

"Getting Link 16 into that aircraft is absolutely critical," said MG Daniel Hughes, program executive officer for command, control, communications-tactical.

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