SAAF gets more ACR500


Reutech Communications is to supply and deliver to the South African Air Force ACR500 very/ ultra high frequency (V/UHF) transceivers and AC500 controllers to the tune of R1 912 755 under a recent order. The order, on February 10, was supported by a R200 000 contract the same day for maintenance of the radio “and integration support.”

The ACR500 is a multimode, multiband, digital VHF/UHF transceiver developed for the SAAF under Project Enlace. Jane’s Military Communications reports it features high-level tactical encryption together with frequency hopping and its spread spectrum is designed to provide secure communications in hostile environments

The ACR500 and associated communications control systems, has already been fitted onto the Rooivalk, AgustaWestland A-109 and AgustaWestland Mk64 SuperLynx 300 helicopters and the Hawk and Gripen fighter systems.

Jane’s Military Communications adds that Reutech Communications says “that while the radio uses standard modulation techniques, enhanced digital techniques are also employed to improve performance over traditional equipment. Full data networking capabilities are built-in. Fast frequency-hopping capabilities and multiple encryption capabilities are available. DSSS is also available to enhance low-visibility, ECCM capabilities.”

Enhanced collocation capabilities facilitate multiple radio installations and are designed to increase flexibility in the placing and selection of aircraft antennas. “Frequency management with multiple channels is also claimed to be simpler.A fully synthesised auxiliary receiver covering 110 to 400 MHz is provided in place of the traditional multichannel guard receiver. Customisation and upgradability are supported by the capability to reconfigure and change software from an external connector on the equipment.
“The AC500 controller is a panel mount device designed to provide a user interface to the ACR500 transceiver. It is designed to control all functions of the ACR500 and provide status reports of the ACR500 on an NVG display, suitable for jet aircraft and helicopters. Using pre-set channels to operate, the functionality of the transceiver can be selected by pushing a button and turning a knob. The AC500 also acts as an interface between the ACR500 transceiver and an external PC or fill gun to download 100 pre-defined pre-select channels and 10 guard channels.”

The GBR500 is the associated ground based transceiver operating from either electricity mains or batteries and incorporates all the advanced features of the ACR500. “This Transceiver is intended to provide reliable communications in critical Ground to Air situations such as ATC, Radar and Mobile static positions,” Reutech Communications says.

Maintenance of the ACR500 very ultra high frequency radio equipment and integration support

ETEL/2010/335 10 Feb 2011 R200 000,00 Reutech Communications(Pty) Ltd

Supply and delivery of the ACR500 very ultra high frequency transceivers and AC500 controllers

ETEL/2010/434 10 Feb 2011 R1 912 755,00 Reutech Communications(Pty) Ltd

Maintenance and support services for SA Air Force’s ACR500 radios for the Gripen aircraft

ELGS/2010/41 22 Sep 2010 R1 500 000,00 Reutech Communications (Pty) Ltd

Manufacture of 8 x ACR500 V/UHF Airborne Radios

ETEL/2007/407 21 Feb 2008 R4 082 304,00 RDI Communications (Pty) Ltd

Maintenance of ACR500 V/UHF radio equipment and integration support

ETEL/2007/250 15 Nov 2007 R315 000,00 RDI Communications (Pty) Ltd