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Aerospace and Defense Channel / Industry News

Harris awarded $150M contract for FAA's nextgen data communications program

August 16, 2013
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Harris Corp., has received authorization from the Federal Aviation Administration to begin work on the seven-year, $150 million Data Communications Network Services (DCNS) element of its Data Communications Integrated Services (DCIS) program. DCNS will help to transition U.S. air traffic control from primarily analog voice communications to digital data connectivity — significantly increasing the efficiency and safety of the nation's air traffic control system.

Under DCNS, Harris will provide the terrestrial circuits and very high frequency data links that connect ground-based air traffic controllers and airborne flight crews. This will enable air traffic controllers and pilots to communicate more effectively by supplementing traditional voice communications with data to enhance departure clearances, weather route, and other air traffic procedures. These enhanced procedures will save fuel, reduce flight times, and increase air traffic capacity.

Harris DCNS partners include ARINC, SITA, and Thales. The DCNS tasks will be performed under the $331 million Data Communications Integrated Services contract, which was awarded to Harris in September 2012. Under that contract, the company is helping the FAA to integrate its end-to-end data communications system.

 "DCNS is a critical next step in advancing the nation's aviation system into the digital era," said John O'Sullivan, vice president, NextGen Initiatives, Civil Programs, Harris Government Communications Systems. "The National Air Space primarily uses analog voice communications for air traffic control. DCNS will enable the FAA to begin a successful, early transition to comprehensive, digital data connectivity." 

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