Boeing Delivers Smaller, Lighter Radio Relay for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
- Improved Tactical Compact Communications Relay on view at Unmanned Systems North America 2012 trade show extends range of military handheld radios
Boeing [NYSE: BA] has delivered production units of a smaller, lighter version of its Tactical Compact Communications Relay (TCCR), which allows a small unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to function as a tactical, range-extending communications repeater for military handheld radios.
Boeing subsidiary Insitu received four 1-pound TCCRs following tests of the narrowband relay aboard the Insitu ScanEagle UAV. A 1.6-pound TCCR has been providing NATO forces with improved connectivity in Afghanistan.
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TCCR allows small groups of forces to transmit and receive encrypted and unencrypted voice and data over long distances and hard-to-reach terrains.
"The upgraded TCCR is a terrific example of Boeing bringing together complementary technologies and skills -- in this case, our protected radio communications and unmanned aerial vehicle expertise -- from across the company to enhance the capabilities of existing products and better address our customers' needs," said Dick Paquette, Payloads and Sensors manager for Boeing Electronic & Mission Systems.
Like the heavier version it replaces, the lighter TCCR system extends the range of line-of-sight military handheld radios from under 10 to more than 150 nautical miles. The new TCCR has been tested on several UAVs, including the Schiebel CAMCOPTER S-100 offered by Boeing, and is small enough to fit into a slot of about 5 by 5 by 1 inch in the ScanEagle's payload bay.
Boeing later this month plans to demonstrate a TCCR variant that is compatible with commercial radios and could support emergency response or other commercial applications.
Source : The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA)