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MoD opts for Airwave service

The Ministry of Defence is to adopt the controversial Airwave digital radio service for secure military radio communications on...

The Ministry of Defence is to adopt the controversial Airwave digital radio service for secure military radio communications on the UK mainland.

David Lynam, director of equipment capability at the MoD, said, "The Airwave service can provide defence with a fully integrated and secure communications service that will increase our ability to work more efficiently and effectively across the MoD and potentially with other public safety organisations."

The move will see Airwave become the de facto military standard for secure radio communications in the UK. The service, which is designed to replace existing analogue networks, offers digital voice quality, data transfer and guaranteed coverage levels.

A comprehensive Airwave network is currently being built to help police forces meet the Government's 2005 deadline for migrating emergency services to secure digital radio systems. The service is expected to help eliminate blackspots and improve the safety of users.

However, last year the Police Federation said some studies had shown that Airwave's Terrestrial Trunked Radio digital handsets and mobile radios could pose a health risk to users. The police service maintains there is no obvious threat to health.

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