The Finnish Defence Forces (FDF) Logistics Command will receive new digital terminals and related accessories from local company Bittium as part of a framework agreement worth up to EUR8.3 million (USD9.5 million).
Bittium announced on 5 November that it will provide its Tough Comnode solution over a four-year period. The framework agreement is expected to see separate purchase orders from this year up to 2022, with all branches of the FDF utilising the technology.
The new terminals are to enable a wired internet protocol (IP) communication and routing capability, as well as enable legacy combat-net radios to be integrated into a deployed Voice over IP (VoIP) infrastructure. "All modern networks in tactical communications are now going towards IP networks," said Jari Sankala, vice-president of defence and security at Bittium.
Sankala told Jane's there were different usages for the Tough Comnode, including VoIP telephone calls through a wired infrastructure as well as an IP router to link computers and laptops to transfer data. Voice and data transfer can also be achieved through wireless links such as Bluetooth and WiFi.
Devices separated by 1 km of cabling and routed through the Tough Comnode can achieve throughput data rates of up to 7 mb/s, according to Bittium. "There's a lot of throughput to transfer media, maps, and pictures," said Sankala.
"It is also zero RF [radio frequency], so if you are not able to use any radio communications, you can communicate through the wired IP, or if you need a backup solution," he added.
The company will also provide its software-based Bittium Tough Voice Service, which is distributed over the network and integrated into every Comnode terminal. "This means there is no single point of failure in the network, which is typical in [a] fixed-infrastructure IP network," Sankala said. "With this it doesn't matter if you lose a node, you always have connectivity."
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