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Tobyhanna employees Reset, retrofit mission expands capabilities of critical Army communications systems

October 23, 2012

By Mr. Anthony Ricchiazzi (CECOM)

TOBYHANNA ARMY DEPOT, Pa. -- Technicians here have successfully completed a mission that gives a key Army communications system increased range and frequencies.

Since 2007, personnel have supported Reset and retrofit missions for the AN/TRC-190 Capacity Line of Sight (HCLOS) Radio Terminal: a Reset effort for the CECOM's Logistics and Readiness Center's Command, Control and Communications-Tactical Directorate and a retrofit in conjunction with the overhaul effort for Project Manager Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (PM WIN-T), which was completed in July.

Reset means repairing equipment to working condition only so it can be returned to the field as soon as possible, as opposed to Recapitalization, which is overhauling or restoring equipment to improve performance or make it like new from the factory.

"Our mission was to retrofit 42 Echo V1 TRC-190s," said Moosic resident Stan Maros, chief of the Digital Group Multiplexer/Mobile Subscriber Equipment Branch, Voice Communications Division, Communications Systems Directorate. "This is the last of the depot's retrofit support of the TRC-190s for the PM WIN-T at this time."

Tobyhanna will begin supporting the PM for field upgrades in fiscal year 2013.

The AN/TRC-190 is a multichannel radio terminal that allows point-to-point ultra high frequency radio links between various nodes of the Mobile Subscriber Equipment communications system. They can be used for line-of-sight, or when paired with the AN/TRC-170, over-the-horizon voice and data communications.

Tobyhanna Army Depot began working the AN/TRC-190 in 2007, and has since completed more than 1,400 systems. TRC-190s are used by the Army.

"The effort started as a repair and return program and grew into an overhaul program plus modifications," said Tom Styer, electronics mechanic leader. "The modifications included a radio upgrade from AN/GRC-245 to GRC-245A(V)3. The radios are voice and data capable and have a faster data transmission speed, which is required to support increasing data volume on the battlefield."

Other modifications included replacing modems with cable drivers and router switches, which also act as voice and data processors for the radios.

To make the modifications, each shelter was stripped and equipped with new wiring and upgraded racks.

"We also installed new cabling, fiber optic convertors and encryption components," said Roy Strauss, electronics mechanic leader. "Electricians installed upgraded circuit breakers."

The shelter is designed to keep the electronics cool, including door louvers that allows cross ventilation.

Maros credited Lean with keeping customer cost down, noting that multiple Lean events kept the Unit Funded Cost the same for the last three years.

"This mission was finished right on time. This success is due to the people who put these systems together, check the electronics, install the upgrades and perform final tests," Maros said.

Tobyhanna Army Depot is the Defense Department's largest center for the repair, overhaul and fabrication of a wide variety of electronics systems and components, from tactical field radios to the ground terminals for the defense satellite communications network. Tobyhanna's missions support all branches of the Armed Forces.

About 5,400 personnel are employed at Tobyhanna, which is located in the Pocono Mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania. Tobyhanna Army Depot is part of the U.S. Army CECOM.

Headquartered at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., the command's mission is to research, develop, acquire, field and sustain communications, command, control computer, intelligence, electronic warfare and sensors capabilities for the Armed Forces.

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