CASG Joint Systems Division head Rear Admiral Tony Dalton has officially openedtheBoeing Defence Australia (BDA) laboratory in Brisbane that will form a crucial role in delivering the Land 2072 Phase 2B digital communication system.
At the facility 170 engineers have been working to understand and overcome the challenges of implementing the new system known as “Currawong” that will provide secure wideband voice, data and video services over wireless and wired infrastructure and link deployed forces with headquarters.
"This system needs to be deployable from regions like Antarctica through to the Middle East."
The lab has been operational for some time after the $666 million contract was awarded to the BDA consortium (including GH Varley and Harris Communications) in September last year.
Currawong will replace the Parakeet voice system in use by the ADF since the early 1990s and is designed to be flexible, durable and deployable to any region including Antarctica.
BDA command, C4I services program director Lee Davis told Fairfax Media the equipment for the program would need to work in different environments without the need for extra environmental conditioning like air conditioners, “because, quite frankly, that just means more fuel, more swap, less agility”.
According to Davis, engineers at the lab are reconfiguring their workspaces every two weeks so they can better understand the challenges Defence personnel will face and be reminded they’re building a system for soldiers that needs to be rapidly reconfigured and redeployed.
The first release of Currawong is due in late 2017.