General Dynamics C4 Systems has received a $25m production order from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for new software-defined, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) CM-300/350 UHF and VHF air traffic control (ATC) radios, related accessories and training materials.
The deal will significantly improve ground-to-air communications as the next-generation radios will deliver clear communication between pilots and air traffic controllers.
In line with the FAA's implementation schedule, the radios will be installed in airport terminal ATC sites, regional control centres and other aviation facilities across the US.
General Dynamics noted that the CM-300/350 radios will replace the FAA's legacy analog radios, some of which are more than 40 years old.
The new radios, which feature built-in VoIP capability, will help create a networked ground infrastructure that will support a more efficient and cost-effective use of National Airspace System (NAS) resources used by air traffic controllers.
General Dynamics C4 Systems president Chris Marzilli said, "The FAA estimates that the number of air travellers will almost double in the next 20 years, which underscores the importance of these radios in keeping air traffic controllers communicating effectively with every pilot in an increasingly congested and complex national airspace."
This order follows a $10m initial award to General Dynamics to qualify and certify the new radios less than a year after the design contract was awarded to the company.
The indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract, which was awarded to General Dynamics in April 2012, forms part of the FAA's Next Generation Air-Ground Communications (NEXCOM) Segment 2 programme.
General Dynamics, an aerospace and defence company based in Virginia, US, has delivered more than 35,000 ATC radio products to the FAA since 1992.
General Dynamics C4 Systems, a unit of General Dynamics, is an integrator of secure communication and information systems and technology.
Image: The new Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) CM-300 UHF and VHF air traffic control (ATC) radios will significantly improve ground-to-air communications. Photo courtesy of General Dynamics C4 Systems.