The radios, for thousands of Army CH-47 Chinooks, AH-64 Apache, and UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter variants, will meet the government's data security requirements and work with legacy communications systems, Raytheon officials say.
A recent software demonstration at the Army's Redstone Arsenal Engineering Lab in Huntsville, Ala., showed how the Raytheon RT-1987 radio interfaces with several flight-management systems that control the radio and provide status updates to the aircrew, according to Raytheon.
"This demonstration proves that the Raytheon radios work with the legacy system and enable greater data sharing and increased security," says Scott Whatmough, vice president of integrated communications systems at Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems.
The upgraded version of the RT-1987 will include modern cryptography capabilities that offer data security and support of the Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) satellite communications network, providing more than 10 times the capacity of the legacy system it replaces, Raytheon officials say.
The RT-1987 radio is the newest member of Raytheon's SkyFire family of software-defined radios for helicopter and fixed wing, manned and unmanned aircraft. It meets the requirements of Joint Tactical Radio System software standards.
The SkyFire radios implement the Software Communication Architecture (SCA) to ease porting waveforms from the government repository. SkyFire radios have the new Soldier Radio Waveform (SRW) which was demonstrated to the Army last year.
The equipment upgrade is backward-compatible with existing equipment installations to minimize platform modifications, simplify installation and significantly reduce aircraft upgrade costs.
For more information contact Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems online at www.raytheon.com.