Handheld Radios for Afghan Coalition

November 2010
From SIGNAL Magazine's NewsNet

U.S. and allied forces operating in the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan are receiving new handheld tactical radios designed to provide secure communications among the diverse militaries. The radios feature National Security Agency (NSA) Type 1 Suite B security, which will enable them to exchange Secret-level voice and data transmissions with U.S. forces using standard-issue Suite B security radios such as the AN/PRC-152(C) handheld and AN/PRC-117G manpack radios, both of which have Type 1 Suite A and Suite B encryption.

Designated the RF-310M-HH, the new handheld radio features a Sierra IIB programmable encryption module, which the NSA certified in June 2009. The radio also includes the Associated Public-Safety Communications Officers (APCO) P25 waveform, which allows interoperability with radios used by civilian police and other emergency response organizations. This permits links between military forces and public safety networks.

The RF-310M-HH has been developed by Harris Corporation, which received a $9.6 million contract under the U.S. Defense Coalition Readiness Support Program to deliver the first units to the ISAF.