Persistent Systems, Thales Unveil Integrated Communications Solution for Dismounts

MPU5 tactical networking device leverages advanced radio-over-IP tether to connect AN/PRC-148E Spear radio to mobile ad hoc network, delivering long sought-after warfighter capabilities

NEW YORK, N.Y.—May 11, 2022—Persistent Systems LLC (“Persistent”), a leader in mobile ad hoc networking (MANET) technology and Thales, a leader in tactical communication equipment, announced today that they will be showcasing a new combined tactical communications solution at the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC), held May 16-19 in Tampa, Florida.

The Department of Defense has long desired a solution that delivers both a MANET and a tactical radio, and whose combined capability exceeds the sum of its parts. The Persistent-Thales solution does that by leveraging an advanced radio-over-IP capability to tether an AN/PRC-148E Spear radio to an MPU5, thus bringing the Spear on to the digital network as an IP talk group.

“Imagine a helicopter transmitting on an AM frequency to a dismounted ground team,” said Shane Flint, VP of Business Development at Persistent. “With traditional tactical radios, some users might receive the helicopter’s transmission and other users might not. But with a Spear/MPU5-equipped team, if any single Spear radio receives the helicopter’s transmission, the entire team will receive it.”

The slender AN/PRC-148E Spear weighs only 1.24 pounds and has programmable cryptography that supports the requirements of the National Security Agency’s (NSA) crypto modernization program.

The Spear radio connects to the MPU5 MANET device via a specially designed cable. This integration allows the MPU5 to remotely auto-configure settings and channel presets on the Spear to ensure the tethered solution “just works,” eliminating operator error and delivering a true plug-and-play capability.

“This capability was designed for combat operations, based on real-world feedback,” said Flint, “The goal was to deliver a simple, no fail solution that empowers the warfighter.”

Both Persistent Systems (Booth No. 1435) and the Thales (Booth No. 1029) will be showcasing this new capability at SOFIC. This game changing capability delivers the “tactical network” that the Special Operations community has been requesting.

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