has placed its first production order for new air traffic control (ATC) radios that feature Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), as the agency prepares to replace its legacy analog radios.
The $25 million order was placed with General Dynamics C4 Systems, the company which produces the CM-300/350 UHF and VHF air traffic radios and training materials.This is the first production order for the radios following a $10 million initial award issued to General Dynamics in April 2012 as part of the FAA
's Next Generation Air-Ground Communications Segment 2 program.
The NEXCOM program is the agency's initiative to replace its analog air traffic communications system with a Very High Frequency (VHF) Digital Link Mode 3 (VDL3) system that provides increased channel capacity with the capability to transmit both voice and data communications.
In September, FAA completed the first phase of testing for the new ATC radios, and began the second phase of testing, placing 90 of the CM 300/350 radios in air traffic facilities located in New Jersey, Florida and Oklahoma to evaluate the performance of the radios within live operational environments.