Skip to Main Content
When deploying, USA Air Force units rely on extensive communications infrastructure to provide voice, video, data, and imagery services. However, the communications infrastructure needed to support these services is often unavailable or inadequate in austere locations. To overcome these limitations, the expeditionary force must deploy with its own equipment and cabling to build an organic communications infrastructure - a task that must be completed quickly since all base operations rely on communications. To meet this challenge more efficiently, the Air Force Communications Agency's Technology Directorate (AFCA/TC) assembled a suite of secure wireless communications products to lower airlift requirements to reduce the time required for installation, while increasing bandwidth and improving services for deployed users. AFCA's design consisted of four integrated technologies: (1) multipoint microwave radios for linking line-of-sight enclaves; (2) IEEE 802.11-based wireless local area networks for mobile users; (3) diffused infrared (IR) wireless network devices for secure, short range applications; and (4) voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) technology for secure and nonsecure voice. The experiment showed that these technologies offer advantages of less size and weight, faster set-up time, and greater flexibility.