Persistent Systems To Upgrade Security Networking Infrastructure at US Nuclear Bases

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The United States Air Force has sought assistance from communications-technology company Persistent Systems to facilitate seamless security operations networking across all three of the country’s intercontinental ballistic missile bases. It is a contract worth almost $76 million.

To connect security personnel in the field with operation centers at a massive distance–and to ensure all of these locations are secure–Persistent has said it will employ its proprietary Infrastructure-based Regional Operation Network. Also called IRON, this framework utilizes interconnected antenna systems installed on fixed poles or toward to enable broad voice and video sharing. The technology will also have the ability to share sensor and GPS-related data.

Several days ago, Persistent revealed they would install 700 IRON assets at the Malmstrom Air Force base in Montana, the Minot AF base in North Dakota, and the F.E. Warren AF base in Wyoming. As part of the Air Force’s Regional Operating Picture initiative, the IRON project expects to network 75 operation centers and at least 1,000 security vehicles spread throughout an area of approximately 25,000 sq. miles.

Indeed, Persistent vice president of business development, Adrien Robenhymer, comments that a single US military base can measure tens of thousands of square miles but lack a “dynamic, high-bandwidth way for headquarters staff to track, and reliably remain in contact with the security personnel patrolling this vast area.” And rolling out the ROP across the three AF bases is just the first step.

However, these military installations are a little different from the average Air Force base because carefully-guarded ICBMs are stored there. ICBM stands for Intercontinental Ballistic Missile; they belong to part of the US nuclear arsenal that some advocacy groups strongly question (and even oppose). This explains the urgency to update their interconnectivity.

Regarding that update, the Biden Administration does have the plan to install a connectivity umbrella, and it should serve the military’s needs on this particular issue. The Pentagon’s Joint All-Domain Command and Control initiative aims to bring together what had long been kept far apart. This includes various databases and forces across the air, land, sea, and space and cyber-related efforts.