Tech

August 24, 2012

New CSEL capabilities provide additional communication options

Tags:
Patty Welsh
Hanscom AFB, Mass.
Courtesy photograph
The Combat Survivor Evader Locator Joint Program Office at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., is working on new capabilities. The improvements will enhance CSEL communications between isolated personnel, as portrayed in the above photo during a demonstration, and rescue assets.

Recent improvements to the capabilities of the Combat Survivor Evader Locator radio are enhancing communications between an isolated person and rescue assets.

CSEL is a hand-held survival radio used with base stations located across the globe that provides critical search and rescue infrastructure for the joint services. Currently, it provides over-the-horizon and line-of-sight voice capabilities.

There are two new capabilities. The first is terminal area communications. TAC provides secure line-of-sight data from a pilot to an isolated person. An isolated person is someone such as a downed pilot or other combat force member who gets separated from their unit.

“Basically, TAC provides the ability for the pilot flying above and the isolated person, or IP, to text message each other securely,” said 1st Lt. Matthew Renner, CSEL test engineer.

Previously, the only option for direct communications with rescue assets was through voice transmissions.

The TAC improvement is two-fold. The radio enhancement is accomplished through a software update that completed development in the spring and is currently fielding. A hardware component, which is located onboard the rescue aircraft and is known as the CSEL interrogator module, is schedule to field later this year starting with A-10s.

“There’s never been anything like it for search and rescue,” said Renner. “The pilots we’ve worked with are really excited about it.”

Testing was done by A-10 pilots at the Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command Test Center in Tucson, Ariz. These pilots were in the process of testing a series of upgrades to the A-10 operational flight program.

Because the group was already performing testing, the team at Hanscom was able to piggyback the new CSEL capabilities into that and therefore did not have to expend any additional funds for testing.

The second capability is terminal area guidance. TAG allows a rescue pilot to “ping” the radio of an isolated person.

From that ping, through onboard distance measuring equipment, the pilot is provided range and bearing to the location of the isolated person.
“This is important in an area where hostile forces may be trying to deny attempts at rescue,” said Renner.

The pilots who performed the testing were excited about the added functionality.

In the case of the TAG, they said it was more accurate than previous radios, according to Renner. However, for the CSEL team, it’s always about trying to get the isolated person back with their unit.

“These capabilities can reduce rescue time and give IPs another option to get home safely,” said Renner. “And that’s our ultimate goal.”

The field upgrade began this summer and will retrofit all Air Force radios with the TAC and TAG capabilities. For the future, the TAC capability will be integrated into other platforms performing the search and rescue mission, such as the HH-60 helicopter.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines July 25, 2014

News: VA reform bills stalled by partisan bickering - Plans for a comprehensive Veterans Affairs Department reform bill that appeared all but finished a month ago devolved into partisan bickering and funding fights July 24, casting doubt on the future of a deal.   Business: Airbus, Boeing, Lockheed announce bids on Danish fighter competition; Saab withdraws -...
 
 

News Briefs July 25, 2014

Marines investigate corporal who vanished in Iraq U.S. Marine Corp officers are launching a formal investigation into whether a Lebanese-American Marine deserted his unit in Iraq or later after returning to the United States. A spokesman for the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Lejeune said July 24 that Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun is being...
 
 
Air Force photograph by A1C Erin OíShea

U.S. Forces display military might at Farnborough

Air Force photograph by A1C Erin O’Shea Capt. Tom Meyers discusses the F-15E Strike Eagle’s capabilities with spectators July 17, 2014, at the Farnborough International Airshow in England. Public access was granted ...
 

 
raptors4

Raptors, Falcons fuel up in desert skies

Three U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors assigned to the 325th Fighter Wing, Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., fly alongside a KC-135 Stratotanker assigned to the 93rd Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash., during Red Flag 14-3, Ju...
 
 
lm-kmax

Lockheed Martin’s unmanned cargo helicopter team returns from deployment

After lifting more than 4.5 million pounds of cargo and conducting thousands of delivery missions for the U.S. Marine Corps, the Lockheed Martin and Kaman Aerospace Corporation K-MAX cargo unmanned aircraft system has returned ...
 
 
Air Force photograph by A1C Thomas Spangler

Sun sets on Red Flag 14-3

Air Force photograph by A1C Thomas Spangler The sun sets behind a row of F-16 Fighting Falcons during Red Flag 14-3, July 16, 2014, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. Red Flag provides a series of intense air-to-air combat scenario...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>