Northrup Grumman to deliver DOD IP conferencing net

The U.S. Department of Defense this week picked Northrop Grumman to build its US$51 million IP video conference network, based on hardware and software from Cisco and Radvision, network services from AT&T and technology from other partners.

The US$51 million network project was awarded by the DoD's Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA). Northrup Grumman will install the DISA's Defense Video System version II (DVS-II) network, which upgrades the current network from digital to IP video and audio conferencing. The DISA provides communications technology for White House, secretary of defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

DVS-II will be built on Cisco's IP Video Conferencing (IPVC) 3540 Multipoint Control Unit and MeetingPlace IP voice/video conferencing software. Radvision's iVIEW multimedia conferencing middleware, which integrates applications such as Microsoft Office, is another large part of the infrastructure.

Radware says the deal will be worth US$6 million to US$8 million in software and services, while Cisco would not say how much of its IP video hardware, software and services are involved.

Otto Guenther, vice president and general manager of the Northrop Grumman's Tactical Systems Division, said in a statement that DVS-II will provide "a key set of tools to enhance the Department of Defense's net-centric operations" and allow U.S military organizations to communicate better during combat.

In addition to the Cisco/Radvisions components, Northrop Grumman will use AT&T network services, along with services and support from Beltway-area IT companies FC Business Systems, CritiCom, and NETCONN Solutions.

While Cisco is helping build the DOD's video net, it's also going after video technology in living rooms. The networking giant recently announced plans to acquire Scientific-Atlanta in a deal valued at US$6.9 billion.

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