Harris goes north to Alaska to upgrade FAA route system

Contractor will replace and upgrade existing satellite communications network

Harris Corp. will upgrade Alaska's air transportation system as part of a 10-year Federal Aviation Administration contract worth $85 million.

As the prime contractor for the Alaskan Satellite Telecommunications Infrastructure program, Harris will replace and upgrade the existing satellite communications network that links the Alaskan Air Route Traffic Control Center in Anchorage with 64 FAA facilities throughout the region, including 59 remote sites, three flight service stations and a test and training facility, according to a Harris announcement dated July 25.

The ASTI program will provide increased network performance and availability while reducing the FAA's cost of operating and maintaining the current Alaskan National Airspace System Interfacility Communication System, which covers 90 percent of Alaska’s commercial aviation communications for critical, essential and routine air traffic control services.

Under the ASTI program, Harris will replace and upgrade system components that have become obsolete or have been affected by the harsh Alaskan weather as well as provide a new network management system, system security enhancements, logistics support and training, the announcement states.

Harris’ teammates on the ASTI program include General Dynamics SATCOM Technologies, General DataComm, Comtech EF Data Corporation, DHL Logistics and Rockwell Collins Satellite Communications Services.

Harris Corp., of Melbourne, Fla., ranks No. 13 on Washington Technology’s 2011 Top 100 list of the largest federal government contractors.

About the Author

David Hubler is the former print managing editor for GCN and senior editor for Washington Technology. He is freelance writer living in Annandale, Va.

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