C4ISR Modernization is a critical element in the current military acquisition process. It allows legacy equipment and systems to interoperate seamlessly with new and advanced technologies thus extending the operational life to these legacy assets with the accompanying economic benefits to the services. TELEGRID possesses three unique qualities which make it an ideal candidate for executing tasks involved in modernizing legacy equipment and systems. They are:
- Experience with and detailed technical knowledge of legacy military C4ISR equipment and systems.
- Experience with and detailed technical knowledge of current and future communications and networking technologies.
- Hands-on experience in the design, development and production of hardware and software solutions to problems related to equipment and systems modernization.
TELEGRID C4ISR CAPABILITIES
TELEGRID’s experience with legacy C4ISR equipment and systems was gained over 30+ years of engineering work mostly performed for/ with the US Army. The focus of that work has been digital communications of secure voice and data in the tactical environment with the basic technology employed being Time Division Multiplexing (TDM). This experience-base includes voice and data encryption devices such as the family of VINSON encryptors including KY-57, KY-58, KY-99(ANDVT) and KY-100, transmission equipment and systems including Line-of-sight (LOS) radios, Beyond-Line-of-Sight satellite and troposcatter systems and copper and fiber optics cables. TELEGRID’s experience-base also covers circuit and message switching as well as Network Operations (NetOps) systems.
TELEGRID’s experience with new advanced technologies was gained mainly while working on Network Operations (NetOps) systems with DISA. The focus of that work has been on network operations and network security, specifically access management and multifactor authentication techniques. At this point TELEGRID has considerable experience and knowledge of technologies involved in authentication and authorization as well as PKI encryption.
Hardware Design and Production
TELEGRID has extensive hands-on experience in the design, development and production of custom and unique hardware solutions. This experience is based on the development of systems that utilize Microcontrollers (MCU), Microprocessors (MPU), Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA), Digital Signal Processors (DSP), System on Chips (SOC) and Single Board Computers (SBC). These embedded systems allow for lower power consumption, fast development cycles, lower design cost and small portable form factors. Over the years TELEGRID has developed close relationships and partnerships with local vendors who supply the elements of products that we don’t produce. This includes metal and plastic housings and chasses, painting services, silkscreening services, environmental testing, etc. Our method of operation with all these vendors is the same. We do all the design and engineering and they do what they do best – provide their expert service. We pride ourselves in being able to give our customers complete solutions and we are always fully responsible for the execution. In addition to the equipment itself, TELEGRID also provides the necessary verification and validation testing, users and operational manuals and certification when needed. Our equipment production capabilities range from one of a kind proof-of-concept prototypes to fully MIL-STD-810G tested equipment. Our capabilities includes:
- Analog and Digital Circuit design and PCB layout.
- Firmware design (FPGA devices and DSP software.)
- RF circuit design.
- Audio circuit design.
- Power systems design (including rechargeable batteries.)
- Mechanical chasses design
- Test and evaluation support
- Maintenance support
Circuit Design and PCB Layout
TELEGRID engineers are experts in complex circuit design and printed circuit board (PCB) layouts. Since much of our experience involves secure communications equipment our engineers have learned to address complex PCB issues such as separation between RED and BLACK circuits on a single board and RF components interconnections. The photograph below shows a circuit board designed to accommodate both a BLACK Ethernet connection and a RED Ethernet connection. It is part of a secure autonomous sensor device currently fielded.
TELEGRID has, over the many years of design and development experience, developed a mature capability of firmware design. These designs are being used in Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) and Digital Signal Processors (DSPs). The photographs below show two circuits that have had a wide use in TELEGRID products.
Mechanical Housing and Chassis Design
TELEGRID has been delivering fully assembled products to its customers. Doing that has helped the company develop an expertise in the design of metal and plastic housings and chasses. We have also developed close relationships with manufacturers of these items as well as vendors specializing in in painting and silkscreening of housings in accordance with mechanical drawings which we provide. Our various mechanical design have successfully undergone various shock and vibration tests including, when required, MIL-STD 810G testing. The first photograph below show the chassis designed and fabricated to hold three modules containing elements of our wireless mesh radio. The second photograph shows our handheld radio which was tested to MIL-STD 810G.
Power Systems Design and Fabrication
Every piece of equipment or system designed or produced by TELEGRID includes a power subsystem. These elements range from simple AC to DC power supplies, DC to DC converters or Lithium Ion rechargeable battery packs. These power subsystems are typically mounted on one of the internal circuit boards inside the unit or are enclosed in a special isolated section of the unit. Some AC to DC power supplies consist of a “wall-wart” which is plugged directly into an AC outlet.
TELEGRID prides itself in its ability to rapidly produce prototype units as part of most projects’ design and development phases. The purpose of these prototypes is to support proof of concept verification and validation testing of actual units. In some cases, in addition to prototype units, TELEGRID engineers also design and build simulators to support actual real-time testing. The photographs below show some prototypes built for specific projects. They also prove why historically prototypes were known as “breadboards”.