In May 2008, the U.S. Army’s Communications and Electronics Command (CECOM) chose DRS Technologies, Inc. in Gaithersburg, MD (since acquired by Italy’s Finmeccanica) for the initial phase of the Jordan Border Security Program. The overall system will include Distant Sentry(TM) mobile and fixed surveillance towers that utilize a variety of Commercial Off-The-Shelf (COTS) sensors, communications between the towers and mobile and fixed Command and Control (C2) Centers, and electronic infrastructure, software, and computing systems for the centers themselves. The Iraqi border is reportedly the focus of the JBSP program, but that country’s borders with Syria are also a concern.
A number of other countries are building or have built similar virtual and/or physical systems, from Saudi Arabia along the Iraq border, to India in Kashmir, to Israel along its hostile borders with Lebanon and the Palestinian Authority. Note, however, that these systems are not a panacea. Israel’s high-tech systems did not detect or prevent the cross-border Hezbollah kidnappings that led to the 2006 war in Lebanon, however, and the US GAO has been less than complimentary concerning Team Boeing’s SBInet system along the USA’s southern border.
Contracts & Key Events
June 2/16: A US funded Jordan Border Security Project with the government of Jordan and US contractor Raytheon is entering its final phase . The $100 million program aims to secure the Hashemite Kingdom against infiltrators from the Islamic State and other extremist organizations operating beyond its border with Syria and Iraq. Under the program, Raytheon and Jordanian subcontractors have been deploying and testing the sensor-fused border barriers while, in parallel, training other Jordanian partners to maintain and operate the system. As well as the barriers, patrol paths and watchtowers, the system is integrated with day and night cameras, ground radars, and a full command, control and communications suite. The system will be completed by the end of next year.
Sept 9/08: The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency announces [PDF] Jordan’s official request to extend their high-tech border monitoring and security program to Increment 2.
The proposed sale to Jordan will include exportable Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) hardware and exportable U.S. military Command and Control application software and hardware, spare and repair parts, support equipment, publications and technical documentation, U.S. Government and contractor technical support, and other related elements of program support. The estimated cost is $390 million, and DRS Corporation in Gaithersburg, MD remains the prime contractor.
The United States Government and contractor representatives will participate in program services and technical reviews during 2008 to 2013. The number of in-country U.S. Government personnel and contractor representatives required to support this program will be determined in joint negotiations as the program proceeds through the development, production and equipment installation phases.
July 15/08: 21st Century Systems, Inc. announces that DRS has picked its High Resolution Situational Awareness (HiRSA) surveillance system with intelligent agent technology, to be part of the JBSP. 21CS release.
April 2/08: The U.S. Army’s Communications and Electronics Command (CECOM) chooses DRS Technologies, Inc. in Gaithersburg, MD for the initial phase of the Jordan Border Security Program. DRS release