The Army's Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (WIN-T), Increment 2 successfully passed an overnight freeze test, successfully operating after freezing through a night of temperatures less than negative 35-degree fahrenheit.
"This was a very successful test and all of the equipment performed as we would have expected in extreme arctic conditions," said Lt. Col. Robert Collins, product manager for WIN-T Increments 2 and 3. "Whether in the desert or in adverse cold environments, WIN-T Increment 2 will provide the needed on-the-move tactical network communications for maneuver elements on the battlefield all the way down the company level."
"There are regions in the world that have these extreme cold weather environments, and it's imperative for the Soldier to know in advance some of the lessons that we have learned up in Alaska so they will be prepared for equipment set up and use when they are deployed," said Tom Franey, WIN-T Increment 2 Reliability Test Lead. "Validating the technical manual procedures in these conditions is imperative to ensure that Soldiers deployed to these extreme environments have the knowledge and information they need to operate the equipment and perform their missions successfully."
The cold weather testing included several on-the-move threads, at-the-halt deployments and storage of the communications equipment. At-the-halt tests were performed in low light conditions following a cold soak of the configuration items overnight at temperatures that measured below negative 35 degrees. The next day the operators were able to bring all of the equipment back up to its operating temperature by utilizing the Environmental Control Units, known as ECUs, inside each platform.
The equipment, much of it commercial off-the-shelf, would not normally be able to withstand such extreme temperatures. The Cisco 2800, for example, has an operating temperature range of 32° to 104°F.
This cold weather test preceeds the final three-week assessment, Initial Opeational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) which will take place in May.