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News > ESC set to deliver 40,000th advanced search and rescue radio
 
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CSEL demonstration
The Electronic Systems Center, located at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., is preparing to deliver the 40,000th Combat Survivor Evader Locator, or CSEL, radio -- shown during a demonstration here -- to the joint warfighting community by the end of October 2010. (Courtesy photo)
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ESC set to deliver 40,000th advanced search and rescue radio

Posted 10/15/2010   Updated 10/15/2010 Email story   Print story

    


by Chuck Paone
66th Air Base Group Public Affairs


10/15/2010 - HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- Officials of the Electronic Systems Center will soon deliver the 40,000th Combat Survivor Evader Locator, or CSEL, radio to U.S. operators.

Because the likelihood of rescue decreases significantly with time, CSEL's advanced technology is credited with saving many lives by increasing U.S. forces' ability to reach and rescue isolated pilots or combat personnel faster than previously used survival radios allowed. CSELs have been in use in Iraq and in Afghanistan for several years.

The system uses over-the-horizon communications and Global Positioning System technology, and "precision-code" GPS in particular. In fact, CSEL was the first survival radio to use the precision code, which offers far greater security and accuracy than commercial GPS.

CSEL also capitalizes on satellite communications capabilities while combining four disparate search and rescue functional components: satellite radio, line-of-sight radio, a GPS system and a search and rescue personnel locator beacon.

"We are extremely proud of our efforts to provide this life-saving capability to the warfighter," said Dave Thompson, CSEL program manager. "However, our work is not complete. We are constantly working to find ways to improve the existing technology in the areas of capability, survivability, and portability, all while ensuring ease of use. Delivering 40,000 radios is exciting. It provides a huge sense of accomplishment knowing more warfighters can utilize this capability which increases their chance of coming home safely."

Often described as DoD's "global 911," CSEL delivers worldwide 24/7 coverage, according to Mr. Thompson.

"CSEL radios make it possible to both locate and positively identify individuals in a matter of minutes," he said. "We stand by our motto: 'No Search - All Rescue.'"

CSEL is the Defense Department's program of record for personnel recovery survival radios, which means that all the services use it. The Navy and the Army purchased most of the early CSEL variants. The Air Force is currently fielding radios to active-duty, Guard and Reserve organizations.

"As we move forward and continue to provide this very important capability, we continue to listen to the warfighter to ensure we address their needs," Mr. Thompson said. "Our success to date would not have been possible without the valuable feedback we receive from the field."



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