Bowman system

Astronics has been awarded two contracts to support the UK Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Bowman tactical communications system.

Awarded by General Dynamics (GD) UK, the two five-year contracts will use the company’s test systems segment to provide full logistical support, including necessary repair and calibration for Bowman radio test solutions (RTS).

The company will also supply spares and obsolescence management and logistics support analysis, which is required for the maintenance of the 80 fielded systems.

Astronics president and chief executive officer Peter Gundermann said: "Astronics’ Bowman RTS is a critical test system used to verify and certify operational tactical radios and communications equipment for the UK MoD’s current tactical radio fleet.

"With these wins, we will continue to support the MoD’s strategy to ensure continuous capability for voice and data communication."

Additional responsibilities include engineering design services and management support of the Bowman RTS equipment, which was originally supplied by the company over ten years ago as part of GD UK-led Bowman programme.

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"Astronics’ Bowman RTS is a critical test system used to verify and certify operational tactical radios and communications equipment."

Equipped with an array of high-frequency, very-high and ultra-high frequency radio sets, Bowman is a digital voice and data system designed to provide secure integrated voice and data services to dismounted soldiers, individual vehicles and command headquarters up to division level, in the theatre.

The radio is currently installed on more than 15,000 military vehicles, the entire Royal Navy fleet and all of its major helicopters supporting land operations, including the Apache, Chinook, Merlin and Lynx.

Expected to remain in service until approximately 2026, the radio played a significant role in Afghanistan by providing UK troops with better awareness of any operational situation.

Image: UK soldiers using Bowman radios on operations in Afghanistan. Photo: Crown copyright.

Defence Technology