ROMSEY, England, June 28 (UPI) -- Britain's Roke Manor Research Tuesday launched the world's first wide area military communications base station.
Roke describes its Battlefield Connect as a portable wireless broadband base station that creates a private communications network for military tactical deployments while significantly enhancing spectrum use.
The Battlefield Connect evaluation system is the world's first portable 3G base station to have up to a 25-mile range, more than 40,000 times the area covered by other similar devices. This extends the communications range where no local infrastructure exists on military deployments, such as peacekeeping, special operations and assistance to population roles.
By providing a self-contained, dedicated 3G network, Battlefield Connect achieves efficient spectrum access, supporting high bandwidth communications such as streaming video from UAVs or imagery and biometric exchange, as well as simultaneous voice communications, Internet access and texting.
It is also fully interoperable with the existing military command infrastructure.
Roke said Battlefield Connect is rapidly deployable. Once the base station is switched on, mobile phones with the private network's SIM card work immediately.
Battlefield Connect is also the first to support full mobility at speeds of up to 74.5 miles per hour, allowing effective communications between both static users, fast-moving ground vehicles and UAVs.
"Spectrum overload is a constant issue for the military," said James Fisher, business development manager at Roke. "This is particularly so in a coalition environment, which makes spectrum use even more challenging as the airwaves are extremely busy.
"Battlefield Connect allows an increased amount of high bandwidth information to be channeled through the spectrum without overloading it."