Thales to assess future military communications needs for EU

The European Defence Agency has commissioned Thales to conduct a study of the main terrestrial and satellite communications network programs in European Union countries as a step towards developing a holistic approach to future military communications for the organization's member states, the company said March 4.

The Future Communications project, or FUCOM, calls for an inventory of various assets held by the member states, such as satellite, ground tactical, and mobile communications systems. In addition, the FUCOM project, on which Thales will work, will then propose ways to combined available resources so as to give European Union forces the systems they need to conduct various operations.

To date, EU member states have tended to address wireless communications interoperability in a piecemeal approach, through a varying array of developments and standards that are not always compatible with each other, Thales said. The FUCOM project would help improve the situation by specifying the resources and technological solutions needed to ensure a cohesive, interoperable capability.
The FUCOM project is divided into four phases. The first phase involves identifying  operational scenarios and capability requirements, including an inventory of the main existing space-based communication systems and terrestrial systems.

The second phase involves shaping the technical characterisation of the communication systems needed to support various operational scenarios. The third and fourth phases, respectively, call for identifying possible future capability gaps and analyzing the radio frequency spectrum to determine which frequency bands are available.

About the Author

William Welsh is a freelance writer covering IT and defense technology.

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