Tactical Tailor

Posts Tagged ‘Thales’

DSEI 17 – Thales Launches F90 Modular Bullpup Rifle

Wednesday, September 13th, 2017

Based on the F90 Austeyr rifle, the F90 Modular Bullpup Rifle, offers a couple of upgrades. In addition to user swappable upper receiver groups, 14″, 16″ and 20″, the gas piston has been modified in order to pass the USSOCOM over the beach test.  

You’ll note Picatinny rails at the 3, 6, 9 and 12 O’clock on the rail.  They’ve also integrated multiple  QD points on either side of the lower receiver.

By now, you’ve noticed that the F90MBR will accept NATO STANAG magazines.

Another major change is the ambidextrous magazine release just in front of the trigger although the weapon retains the rear mag release just aft of the magazine well.

In order to accommodate NATO STANAG magazines, the barrel interface has been modified slightly from the F90. I asked about M855A1 compatibility and was assured that their feedramps will accommodate its use.

You’ll also note a full range of accessories for this weapon system.


Warrior East 2017 – Thales Body Conformal Antenna

Friday, July 14th, 2017

Thales developed this Body Conformal Antenna as part of the Soldier Radio program.

It is PALS compatible and the Antenna whip will bend on one axis to conform to your kit. It is safety certified for use worn against the human body and weighs just 9oz.  The Antenna works in 225-450 MHz, 1250-1390 MHz and 1755-1850 MHz. The gain while body worn is -10 to -4 dBi and -5 to 1 dBi in free space. The VSWR < 3.0 for more than 95% of freqs, max < 3.5.

Thales selected For U.S. Army Rifleman Radio program

Thursday, May 14th, 2015

Thales Rifleman Radio - Copyright Thales

Arlington, VA, 13 May 2015 – Thales has recently been selected to provide the U.S. Army with Rifleman Radio systems. This award, under a ten-year (five-year base with five-year option) indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract, will allow Thales to compete for the different orders of the program.

The selection is for the Rifleman Radio Full Rate Production (FRP) program, also part of the U.S. Army’s Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) Handheld, Manpack and Small-form Fit (HMS) program. The Army’s projected contract cost through 2025 for radios, accessories, technical support and sustainment, will not exceed $3.9 billion.

The Army’s acquisition strategy is to compete individual delivery orders following qualification testing. Testing will be performed on radios delivered under the initial delivery order. Qualified radios are expected to begin being fielded in 2017.

Thales’ enhanced AN/PRC-154A Rifleman Radio is the most advanced, fielded, and proven soldier radio on the market, delivering voice and data simultaneously. It provides secure, inter-squad, networked communications and situational awareness to the soldier at the tactical edge of the battlefield, improving mission effectiveness.

Thales has been involved in the development and fielding of the Rifleman Radio since 2004 under Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP). The Army has procured more than 21,000 radios to date under the LRIP.

Thales has leveraged over two decades of handheld radio design experience in its latest Rifleman Radio solution, which exceeds the original program requirements by improving battery life, mission weight, and waveform performance while also enhancing the user interface.


Thales Selected By The U.S. Army For Its VIPER Mounted Rifleman Radio System

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014


Thales Defense & Security, Inc. has been awarded an Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract by the U.S. Army for its Soldier Radio Waveform Appliqué (SRW-A) radio system—the AN/VRC-121 Vehicle Integrated Power Enhanced Rifleman, or VIPER.

Developed jointly with Ultralife Corporation’s Communications Systems business, VIPER responds to the U.S. Army’s requirement for a single channel, vehicle mounted radio running SRW that can be installed into the Single Channel Ground and Airborne Radio System (SINCGARS) Combat Net Radio (CNR) vehicular mount or used in a stand?alone configuration. The radio system provides an independent or second channel solution for vehicle communications installations, acting as a conduit for voice and data between the dismounted soldier, mounted platforms, the Unit, and higher headquarters. VIPER provides soldiers with access to the government’s classified networks for Secret and below operations.

VIPER integrates, and interacts seamlessly, with an installed AN/PRC-154A Rifleman Radio. The Rifleman Radio, which was co-developed, and is being co-manufactured, by Thales and General Dynamics C4 Systems under the Joint Tactical Radio System Handheld, Manpack, and Small Form Fit program of record, has been fully tested, certified, and deployed. With more than 19,000 Rifleman Radios manufactured, the VIPER solution ensures that the U.S. Army has immediate interoperability with currently fielded radios, while soldiers gain greater operational flexibility due to its ability to operate in both UHF and Lbands. VIPER provides “Jerk and Run” access to the installed Rifleman Radio, enabling a quick transition between mounted and dismounted operations without losing communications.

“We appreciate the importance of working closely with the U.S. Army in providing our warfighters with mission-critical capabilities,” said Michael Sheehan, in charge of Defense & Security activities for Thales in the U.S. “Our VIPER solution allows for rapid delivery of a low-risk, operationally suitable, highly reliable solution for the Army’s SRW vehicular radio needs.”

The basic IDIQ contract, awarded to four companies, allows the companies to compete on future orders to support fielding requirements. The total potential IDIQ contract value is $988 Million. The initial contract award is for engineering and field service support to evaluate the SRW-A capability during the U.S. Army’s Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) 14.2 in May 2014.

Thales’ VIPER and Rifleman Radio products are manufactured at the company’s Clarksburg, Md., facilities.


Thales Names Aaron Brosnan as Business Development Lead for US Communications Business

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

Thales has made the following announcement –

Thales Communications, Inc., a global leader in the development, manufacture, and support of tactical communications products for warfighters and first responders, has appointed Aaron Brosnan as the company’s new Vice President of Business Development. Mr. Brosnan is responsible for developing and executing the company’s business development strategies and growing the company’s core business, including its next generation communications products.

Mr. Brosnan comes to Thales from SCI Technologies, Inc., a Sanmina-SCI company, where, as Vice President of Business Development, he was responsible for leading its new business initiatives in the areas of aviation communications systems and avionics products, ground tactical vehicular and command post communications systems, radiation detection systems, tethered fiber optic systems, and engineering services. Prior to SCI, Mr. Brosnan spent eight years with Thales, where he served in several key business development positions, most recently as Director, Business Development for Army Programs. While at Thales, he successfully led the initiatives in capturing naval and maritime communications programs and broadening the company’s product portfolio to include automated, integrated shipboard high frequency (HF) communication systems. He subsequently assumed responsibility for overseeing business in the areas of command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR) products and systems. Before joining Thales, Mr. Brosnan held senior management roles, both in engineering and business development, at Raytheon Systems in the US and the UK.

“Aaron has extensive experience in senior business development and key account management roles within the defense industry,” said Michael Sheehan, President and CEO of Thales Communications, Inc. “He is a highly accomplished, well-respected industry leader very focused on understanding customer needs, developing effective solutions, and ensuring the continuous delivery of top-quality products and services.”

Mr. Brosnan is a veteran of the U.S. Navy. He enlisted and was subsequently commissioned as a Naval Flight Officer. He graduated, with honors, from the U.S. Naval Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in Ocean Engineering. He went on to receive a Masters of Engineering Management from The George Washington University.

Mr. Brosnan’s awards include the Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, and Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal.

Thales Appoints Todd Borkey as Chief Technology Officer and Strategic Initiatives Lead for US Communications Business

Friday, February 1st, 2013

Thales has announced that Todd Borkey is now on board as their CTO and Strategic Initiatives Lead. Congratulations!

Thales Communications, Inc., a global leader in the development, manufacture, and support of tactical communications products for warfighters and first responders, has appointed Todd Borkey as the company’s Chief Technology Officer and Vice President of Strategic Initiatives. Mr. Borkey is responsible for leading the management of a diverse portfolio of businesses and products, including Sonars, Ship Combat Management Systems, Helmet Mounted Displays, Cyber Security, Training and Simulation, and Radars. This includes identifying additional business areas for company expansion in the U.S. defense and security market and leading the company’s initiatives to extend the scope and reach within U.S. markets for the products and systems of the global Thales organization.

Mr. Borkey is a proven business leader with extensive experience in general management, programs, and business development. He comes to Thales from DRS Defense Solutions, where, as Chief Technology Officer since 2007, he led the strategic planning, innovation, and IR&D process for its diverse $1.3 billion defense business. Prior to DRS, Mr. Borkey served as Director of Business Development for Northrop Grumman’s Government Systems Division. Earlier in his career, he held a range of engineering assignments at AT&T Bell Labs and Sandia Labs.

“Todd’s expertise and leadership will be instrumental in the continued growth of our company,” said Michael Sheehan, President and CEO of Thales Communications, Inc. “With the expansion of our capabilities and our product portfolio, we are well positioned to significantly increase our offerings, and our value, to our customers.”

Mr. Borkey received a Master of Science degree in Engineering Management from the Stevens Institute of Technology and an undergraduate degree in Applied Mathematics.


Norwegians Choose Thales for NORMANS Soldier System

Friday, October 14th, 2011

The Norwegian Ministry of Defence has selected Thales to provide their commercialized version of the NORMANS Soldier Digitization effort. Over the next five years Thales will lead a team to produce the systems which are built to the specifications produced by the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI) and and tested by the Telemark Battalion (TmBn).

The 2 NORMANS devices provide blue force tracking, navigation, target hand-off, and text messaging. NORMANS Light is worn by the individual Soldier member of a Dismounted Close Combat (DCC) squad and NORMANS Advanced is used by small unit leaders. As you can see NORMANS Advanced offers a full color display and will deliver more data rich information.

“NORMANS digitised soldier system will provide Norwegian soldiers with improved situational awareness, improved ability to navigate and will provide effective mission planning. As a result of this soldiers will have increased effectiveness and safety in operations”, says Secretary of State in the MoD, Roger Ingebrigtsen.


British Troops Get New Sights

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

According a comprehensive article in the British website The Register published earlier this week, UK forces will begin receiving new weapon optics beginning in 2011. According the the article the Ministry of Defence announced during the annual DSEi arms expo that £150 Mil would be spent on new sights. The new kit will be purchased with Future Integrated Soldier Technology (FIST) funding.

New Weapon Sights
Photo: UK MoD

Somewhat awkward was a further assertion that the acquisition would “support the British defence industrial base”. Unfortunately, most of the equipment is actually made in other countries but prime Thales will at least be bringing home some bacon as they serve as integrator.

Quoting the article for information on the new equipment:

“• Underslung 40mm grenade launchers, which have been fitted beneath the rifle of one man in each fire-team of four since 2003, will now get new sights – and also new “fire-control systems”. The 40mm launcher is a low-velocity weapon and has to be pointed high above the target in order to lob its grenades any distance, a process which calls for range to be estimated accurately.
The new fire-control gadget to be mounted alongside the launcher will use a laser rangefinder to work out the correct elevation angle automatically – but our military sources say it makes the rifle/launcher combo unrealistically heavy for combat use, and that troops will find ways to get rid of it.
• Thermal sights will be provided for rifles, marksman’s weapons and light machineguns. These can be used to detect hidden enemies and bombs while on patrol, and function even in total darkness – when the regular light-amplifying night vision gear now in use doesn’t work. This stuff is already in use by some units, and is considered good by our sources.
• New Lightweight Day Sights will be provided, replacing the SUSAT* sights which came in when the SA80 weapons were introduced during the 1980s. SUSAT was very popular in its day (unlike the SA80s, which were only sorted out twenty years later in a German factory), but according to our sources the new sights are much better, offering improved field of view and a clearer picture. “A gleaming bit of kit,” we’re told.
*SSD Note: This sight is the Elcan Specter currently part of the SOPMOD program.
• The new thermal scopes, in a popular bit of good sense, have open Close Quarter Battle Sights mounted on top of them. This means that a soldier in a close-up gunfight doesn’t need to peer through a scope as he shoots, and lose track of what’s happening around him. This gets the thumbs up as well.
• Fire-team commanders will get new “Target Locating System” binoculars containing laser rangefinders and digital compasses, allowing them to mark things they see accurately on a map. This is actually quite basic stuff nowadays, and even in the British army forward artillery spotters and similar specialists have had such kit for some time. It’s new for ordinary infantrymen to have it, however.
There is the option to hook up the binos to a sat nav and a data net, so calculating the coordinates of a target and sending them to other units automatically, but it wasn’t clear at DSEi how much of this capability will be delivered to British infantry and our informants were also unsure. One does note that the only current option for infantry data transmission, the Bowman section-leader’s radio, has a very poor reputation.
• There will also be some ruggedised digital cameras and simple periscopes for peering over walls and round corners without getting shot. The FIST project was originally expected to include on-gun cameras feeding an image to a helmet display for this sort of purpose (those ignorant of shooting realities also thought the weapon might be fired usefully in such a position). It seems that an outbreak of realism has occurred in the MoD.”