Data Link Systems
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Navy Contracts DLS for On-Ship Comms Upgrades

May 19, 2020
Data Link Systems has received a $3.2 million production contract from the U.S. Navy for multifunctional information distribution system (MIDS) cabinet terminals.

The U.S. Navy has awarded a $3.2 million production contract to Data Link Solutions (DLS) for multifunctional information distribution system (MIDS) cabinet terminals as part of modernization efforts regarding on-ship communications systems. The MIDS on-ship modernization (MOS MOD) system transmits and receives text and images between air, ground, and maritime forces (see the figure) in real time. It is field-interchangeable between MIDS low-volume terminal 4 systems and software-defined-radio (SDR) MIDS joint tactical radio systems (JTRS). The MOS MOD systems can work with three additional waveforms and can provide frequency remapping, crypto-modernization, increased throughput, and several other functions.

The MOS MOD systems are interoperable with Link 16 SDR systems, facilitating communications between U.S. and NATO troops. “This smaller, lighter system will give the U.S. Navy all the functionality of previous Link 16 radio models but with improved access to line replaceable units, which enhances maintenance operations,” said Alan Dewar, director for Data Link Solutions. “The system is more than 60% lighter than the current configuration and has a reduced cabinet height of 48 in.” DLS (, which is a joint venture between BAE Systems and Collins Aerospace, is a leading supplier of Link 16 communications systems hardware and software. 

MOS MOD shipboard systems provides 1-kW output power capability working with a MIDS JTRS receiver and transmitter. These systems are representative of the final production systems, moving from qualification and low-rate initial production into fleet fielded systems. Production is set to take place at BAE Systems (Wayne, NJ) and Collins Aerospace (Cedar Rapids, IA) with delivery scheduled to begin in September 2020. 

Data Link Solutions,