Air Force builds $490m comm infrastructure

The Air Force has hired several companies under a $490 million contract to build a communications infrastructure for deployed personnel.

The service plans to buy 140 satellite communications terminals, 148 network control centers and 181 integrated communication access packages under the indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract.

The contractors are two Northrop Grumman Corp. divisions'Defense Mission Systems of Reston, Va., and Electronic Systems of Gaithersburg, Md.'General Dynamics Corp. Decision Systems of Scottsdale, Ariz.; Dell Marketing of Round Rock, Texas; and Redcom Laboratories Inc. of Victor, N.Y.

The object is to improve interoperability, increase capacity, and decrease airlift and footprint of comm systems, and field common fixed solutions, a DOD statement said. Work under the contract is to be complete by July 2009.

The Electronic Systems Center at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., is the contracting agency. About $20 million of the contract amount is already obligated.

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