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The SIGNAL Blog

From Beanbags to Bomblets

August 4, 2008
By H. Mosher

U.S. military ground troops have received their first fully modular ground robot system that can launch a variety of munitions, from 40-millimeter beanbags to 40-millimeter high-explosive grenades. The Modular Advanced Armed Robotic System (MAARS) features a unibody chassis with a plug-and-play design, so warfighters will be able to expand its capabilities as new accessories and attachments become available.
As currently designed, MAARS works at a range of over half a mile from the human controller. Features include loudspeakers, a green pulsing laser and a two-way communications system. MAARS also can be used to launch smoke, star clusters and pepper spray as well as engage the enemy with an M240B machine gun firing 7.62-millimeter ammunition.

MAARS is a tracked vehicle that can traverse a variety of terrains, including stairs, but it also can be outfitted with wheels to increase travel speed while reducing noise. The turret also can hold a drop-in manipulator arm as well as several types of weapons and sensor packages.

General Dynamics C4 Systems to Provide Digital Modular Radios to U.S. Navy

August 4, 2008
By Katie Packard

General Dynamics C4 Systems has been awarded a $23 million contract for AN/USC-61(C) digital modular radios (DMRs), the U.S. Navy's standard communications system for newly constructed ships and submarines. General Dynamics C4 Systems has delivered more than 370 DMRs for use throughout the fleet and at Navy shore sites, enabling secure short-range and global communications using U.S. military standard waveforms.

ManTech Awarded $124 Million Contract to Support State Department's Global Information Technology Modernization Program

August 4, 2008
By Katie Packard

ManTech International Corporation has received a five-year, $124 million contract from the U.S. State Department to support the global information technology modernization (GITM) program. ManTech will support the State Department's Bureau of Information Resource Management Program Management and Analysis Directorate to centrally manage the worldwide modernization of the department's computer networks.

Stanley Incorporated Receives Contract to Support U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, Futures Directorate

August 4, 2008
By Katie Packard

Stanley Incorporated has been awarded a five-year, indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract with a $300 million ceiling by the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM), Futures Directorate. Stanley will provide technology, engineering and integration services to support INSCOM's worldwide intelligence operations.

Boeing Team to Design New Spacecraft Power Generation System

August 4, 2008
By Katie Packard

A team led by Boeing Advanced Systems has been awarded a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) contract for the first phase of the Fast Access Spacecraft Testbed (FAST) program. Team members include DR Technologies, Northrop Grumman Astro Aerospace, Texas A&M University, Spectrolab Incorporated (a Boeing subsidiary) and key suppliers. DARPA's FAST is a multiphase effort to design and develop a ground test prototype of a new high power generation subsystem (HPGS) for spacecraft.

Northrop Grumman to Develop Hybrid Thermal Ground Plane

August 4, 2008
By Katie Packard

Northrop Grumman Corporation has been selected by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop and demonstrate an ultra high-capacity hybrid thermal ground plane needed to overcome heat-related challenges in semiconductors employed in electronic systems. The $1.7 million, 18-month, cost-plus-fixed-fee contract is for the first phase of the three-phase DARPA program.

Incoming: The Patterns of Data Management

August 1, 2008
By H. Mosher

In this month's Incoming column, Lt. Gen. Harry D. Raduege Jr., USAF (Ret.) talks about how management of data is so important. He looks at it from the enterprise level, discussion trends in how organizations can streamline data management operations through consolidation of data centers. While the trend is interesting to discuss, it brings up another interesting point: Individuals are just as likely to need "data management" skills these days, what with the incredible amount of information that flows through their email in-boxes and feed readers. So, for discussion this month: How much is too much information, and how do you manage it all?

Harris Corporation Awarded $7.8 Million U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command Contract

August 1, 2008
By Katie Packard

Harris Corporation has been awarded a three-year, $7.8 million contract to design, develop, test and implement a new enterprise software solution for the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command (USACIDC).

CACI Awarded $9.5 Million Contract to Provide Video Teleconferencing Support for Eighth U.S. Army

August 1, 2008
By Katie Packard

CACI International Incorporated received a $9.5 million contract to provide video teleconferencing (VTC) services and solutions to the Eighth U.S. Army, stationed in the Republic of Korea. The Eighth U.S. Army supports the deterrence of North Korean aggression against the Republic of Korea during armistice, crisis and wartime operations. Under the VTC contract, CACI will partner with the U.S. Army's regional chief information office in Korea to provide VTC capabilities that range from single-user desktop systems to large, multi-screen systems for command center collaboration.

Northrop Grumman to Upgrade Portuguese Air Force F-16s

August 1, 2008
By Katie Packard

Northrop Grumman's third-generation LITENING Advanced Targeting (AT) system has been selected by the Portuguese Air Force for its F-16 advanced targeting pod upgrade program. The LITENING AT system is a self-centered, multi-sensor weapon aiming system that enables fighter pilots to detect, acquire, auto-track and identify targets for highly accurate delivery of both conventional and precision-guided weapons.

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