The federal government has given second pass approval for LAND 2072 Phase 2B Battlespace Communications System (Land), providing the Australian Defence Force (ADF) with the next generation of battlespace telecommunications network capability.
Minister for Defence Kevin Andrews stated that with an acquisition program cost of about $900 million, the preferred solution for the requirement is being offered by a team consisting of Boeing Defence Australia, Varley Group and Harris. The project will also incorporate deployable computer networks sourced from Thales Australia.
“Approval of this project is a critical milestone in achieving a modern, networked Army,” Minister Andrews said. “This equipment will enable deployed forces to operate more effectively, providing digital communications from theatre headquarters to the unit level.”
MINDEF stated that LAND 2072 Phase 2B is expected to result in the employment of about 250 people across Australia.
“This project will enable Army, and elements of the Air Force and Navy, to replace ageing mobile communications and computer networks,” he said on June 26. “It will provide commanders with an increased level of situational awareness, command and control, and information sharing capability. In particular, this system will use leading-edge digital wideband voice, data and video services over wireless and wired infrastructure to improve the capacity, flexibility and responsiveness of the Australian Defence Force’s information exchange during operations.”
Initial operational capability (IOC) is expected to be achieved in 2017, Minister Andrews said, and then final operational capability (FOC) in 2020.