The joint venture a4ESSOR (Alliance for ESSOR) has been awarded a contract by OCCAR to start a new phase of the ESSOR (European Secure Software Defined Radio) programme, called ESSOR Operational Capability 1 (OC1). Lino Laganà, President of a4ESSOR, and Arturo Alfonso-Meiriño, Director of OCCAR, signed the contract in Bonn on 2 November 2017. The ESSOR OC1 phase aims to enhance the operational capabilities of the ESSOR High Data Waveform (HDR WF), developed in the previous phase of the ESSOR programme, in order to meet the most demanding requirements of the battlefield with secure, high capacity land tactical communications. The OC1 phase will also focus in defining the basis for managing the life cycle of the HDR WF in operational use.
The ESSOR Programme was launched by Finland, France, Italy, Poland, Spain and Sweden managed by OCCAR since its definition in 2008 and the first phase successfully ended in 2015. Since then, several ESSOR demonstrations to the main actors of the international Software Defined Radio (SDR) community have proven the value of the ESSOR products. In November 2016, a field demonstration was held in Finland where radio platforms, independently developed within different national programmes by three contractors, were able to seamlessly interoperate on the field, in a realistic operational scenario.
Motivated by the success of the first phase, Finland, France, Italy, Poland and Spain have decided to pursue further the development of the ESSOR High Definition Radio Wave Form to OC1, enhancing it with new features and functionalities. However, the scope of OC1 is much more than just technical; entailing definition and dissemination of global SDR standards (for both architecture and waveform) based on ESSOR and developing a consistent Through Life Management approach for its lifecycle over the next 20 years. OCCAR, via its best practices and programme management principles, will ensure the success of this effort, managing all the contractual activities and coordinating the harmonisation of the mid- to long-term expectations of the stakeholders.
Bittium is part of OC1 phase that continues the ESSOR programme. During the OC1 phase, the operational capabilities of ESSOR HDR WF, meant for joint operations between defence forces of different countries, will be enhanced. The contract for the OC1 phase between the industrial consortium a4ESSOR, including companies developing the European European Software Defined Radio technology, and OCCAR , representing the ESSOR participant countries, was announced earlier today.
The ESSOR HDR WF is also part of Bittium’s new Bittium Tough SDR tactical radios, Bittium Tough SDR Handheld and Bittium Tough SDR Vehicular. The radios together with the waveform enable broadband data transfer, joint operations, and direct communication between defense forces of different countries in international operations starting already from the battle group and combat vehicle level. With the development of the operational capabilities of the ESSOR HDR WF during the OC 1 phase the new functionalities will be available also for the Tough SDR family of radios.
The duration of the ESSOR OC1 phase is 45 months and the value of the contract is around €50 million. The value of the contract will be divided along the duration of the OC1 phase and between the five participant companies: Bittium, Indra, Leonardo, Radmor and Thales. The contract has no effect on Bittium's financial outlook for the year 2017, published on 10 October 2017 in Bittium's financial guidance for the year 2017.