American communications equipment company Harris has bagged a contract to upgrade critical air traffic control (ATC) communications at the Air Traffic Control Centre (ATCC) in Kingston, Jamaica.

Under the terms of the deal, Harris will deliver two Liberty-STAR voice communication and control systems (VCCS) to the Kingston ATCC in order to modernise the existing main and back-up systems.

Harris Mission Networks president Ed Sayadian said: "Being a popular tourist destination means the skies over Jamaica are often very active and finding a solution that keeps its airways operating safely and efficiently is vital.

"The skies over Jamaica are often very active and finding a solution that keeps its airways operating safely and efficiently is vital."

"Having previously supplied systems to airports in Kingston and Montego Bay, Jamaica is very familiar with the quality, reliability and value Harris provides."

Harris Liberty-STAR VCCS features open-platform software, a modular architecture and commercial-off-the-shelf hardware.

It will be able to provide a reliable, scalable communications solution for ATC towers, airline and area control dispatch, flight service stations and mobile shelters.

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The systems will be deployed with touchscreen operator positions, radio and telephone interfaces, and a System Maintenance, Administration and Reconfiguration Terminal (SMART) Position.

The Jamaican aviation authorities will be able to migrate to the new technology when they are ready.

Harris will also deliver its Liberty-Radio Gateway to help airport authorities transfer air-ground communications from the ATCC’s main system to another pre-defined location.

The solution, which is a part of Harris’s VCS21 family of advanced VCCS products, is designed to ensure safe, flexible mission-critical operations.