(Source: The Motley Fool)
Is the U.S. Army Really Spending $12.7 Billion on Radios?
The U.S. government spends a lot of money on weapons. So much money, in fact, that sometimes, you see a number and think, “That can’t be right. But then again, maybe.”
I had one of those moments last week, when the Department of Defense reported that it had just awarded three contractors a $12.7 billion contract to supply it with radios. That number couldn’t be right. And in fact, since the exact dollar figure on the contract read “$12,725,724,536,” I thought it was more likely a typo. Someone was data-entering the number for a $12.7 million radio contract, mistyped the “thousands” place, retyped it, and forgot to delete the original entry.
But it wasn’t a typo.
And the Pentagon really is spending $12.7 billion on radios.
$500 toilet seats are so 1980s
That’s a whole lot of moola to spend on what’s likely to work out to about 65,000 radios — roughly $200,000 per set. Granted, the value of the award also includes the cost of “accessories and related services” relevant to the radios.[…]
What is the Harris Falcon III AN/PRC-158?
Wanting to know a little more about the Harris Falcon III AN/PRC-158 Multi-channel Manpack (MCMP), I checked out Harris’ product page. Here’s the provided description:
TYPE 1 Security in a Versatile Two-Channel Manpack
The Harris Falcon III® AN/PRC-158 Multi-channel Manpack (MCMP) is a modular two-channel manpack radio that covers the full 30-2500 MHz frequency range in a form factor 30% smaller than similar products.
Hosting a wide variety of Software Communications Architecture (SCA) narrowband and wideband waveforms, each of the AN/PRC-158’s two channels can be used to transmit and receive simultaneously. The radio can also connect different nets and sub-nets for both voice and data using its embedded routing and cross-banding capabilities. Plus the AN/PRC-158 incorporates fully integrated MUOS-capable hardware into the standard radio. This eliminates the logistical complexity of Power Amplifier appliqué change-outs, as well as the cost and weight burden of an additional module.
- Covers 30 to 2500 MHz frequency range up to U.S. TOP SECRET level with Harris Sierra™ II software programmable encryption
- 30% smaller than other 2-channel manpacks
- Runs narrowband and wideband waveforms
- Integrated MUOS hardware
- Embedded routing and cross-banding
- Optional mission modules for advanced mission capabilities
- NSA-certified for voice and data communications
- Supports numerous legacy encryption and keyfill modes, and Type 3 AES keys in VHF/UHF AM and FM mode, storing multiple mission fill files for maximum mission flexibility
- Embedded SAASM GPS receiver allows local position to be displayed as well as automatic position reporting
- Advanced capabilities with mission modules for ISR reception, MANET capabilities and SIGINT.
As The Motley Fool suggests (and rightly so) this might be a brilliant time to invest in Harris Corp.