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Communications-Electronics recognized as three of the top 10 Army's greatest inventions for 2009

Nov 28, 2010

By RDECOM CERDEC Public Affairs

Three U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command's communications-electronics center technologies proven useful in the field by U.S. Soldiers will be recognized as part of the Top Ten 2009 Army's Greatest Inventions during an awards ceremony at the Army Science Conference Nov. 28 in Orlando, Fla.

"There are several ground-breaking capabilities that come out of our Army labs and centers, but what makes this recognition significant is that these technologies were specifically selected by our Soldiers for the value provided in the field," said Jill Smith, CERDEC CERDEC director.

CERDEC's three AGI recipients include a portable power system, a threat warning system and counter radio controlled-improvised explosive device electronic warfare, or CREW, system.

The Rucksack Enhanced Portable Power System, or REPPS, is a lightweight, portable power system capable of recharging batteries and/or acting as a continuous power source. This system from the CERDEC Command and Control Directorate, combines anti-glint solar panels, connectors and adaptors for increased charging options, and can charge most common military battery types in five to six hours.

"Our goal in CERDEC C2D is to increase the Soldier's energy independence on the battlefield while reducing his physical and logistical burden. We're focusing on renewable energy as part of this solution, and the Soldier's feedback has been critical throughout. It's helped REPPS evolve significantly, and we will continue to work closely with the Warfighter to develop durable, light-weight, low-cost systems that will better fit his needs," said Pete Glikerdas, C2D acting director.

Soldiers can capitalize on REPPS renewable energy abilities by daisy-chaining several of the systems together if devices with higher power need to be charged.

The pass-thru assembly cable allows simultaneous battery recharging while delivering power to an end item enabling the Warfighter to complete their longer operations missions and extending the usage time for their equipment. REPPS, which has been used for surveillance and reconnaissance missions, is designed for silent watch operations and operations in remote areas.

Wolfhound Handheld Threat Warning System is another CERDEC technology intended to assist the Warfighter with missions. Wolfhound targets command and control nodes of the enemy.

Wolfhound, from the CERDEC Intelligence and Information Warfare Directorate, is a hand-held, radio frequency threat warning and direction finding system that is intended to fill the coverage gaps and limitations of traditional systems.

"The Wolfhound system was developed in response to Soldiers saying 'We can hear them-we need to be able to locate them,'" said John Lynch, Wolfhound product manager.

This system provides mission support and force protection, aids in combat search and rescue, can identify and geolocate spotter positions and observation posts, and can be used in both static and mobile operations.

"It helps Soldiers with their missions; but it is lightweight, and Soldiers can master the 'buttonology' of Wolfhound in about 20 minutes and can learn use and concept of operation in about 16 hours," said Lynch.

Achieving optimal size, weight and power requirements are essential for most CERDEC technologies. The third AGI recipient, CREW Duke V3 , is a field-deployable, single-unit system that was also designed to have minimal size, weight and power requirements while providing simple operation and optimal performance in order to provide force protection against radio controlled-IEDs.

The CREW Duke V3 was developed by the CERDEC I2WD in conjunction with Product Manager CREW to provide electronic, life-saving protection in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, according to John Masco, I2WD Electronic Warfare Air/Ground Survivability EW Systems Ground Branch DukeV3 lead electronics engineer.

The first generation of the CREW system was previously recognized in 2006 as a 2005 U.S. Army's Greatest Invention, and more than 25,000 Duke systems have been fielded to date. Duke V3 has played a role in reducing insurgents' employment of radio controlled IEDs.

"These are the sixth and seventh Army Greatest Invention award I2WD has received and are exceptional accomplishments for our organization and the Army," said Anthony Lisuzzo, I2WD director. "This recognition demonstrates that CERDEC I2WD works very closely with the Army team to ensure that the Warfighter gets the best technology and capabilities that are available to contribute to their mission success and their safety."

In total, CERDEC has received 11 Army Greatest Invention awards since the Army started recognizing these technologies in 2002.

"The consistent recognition of CERDEC technologies by Soldiers is a true testament to the effort and ingenuity of our workforce," said Smith. "This acknowledgment reminds us all that our work has a direct effect on the men and women serving our country."



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