WB Group unveils Fonet MK2 platform integration system

Paolo Valpolini

Specialised in defence electronics and strike systems, the WB Group of Poland unveiled at Eurosatory its Fonet MK2 tactical vehicle integration platform, that adds a number of capabilities to the previous Fonet.

The new iteration of the Fonet allows integrating all sensors and effectors into a single system, and was designed with a bottom-up concept, starting from the lowest levels of command up to battalion level and higher, keeping it robust and user friendly.

The Fonet MK2 is build on a modular and scalable Central Unit that is the primary integration point allowing to create a unified interface for all subsystems installed on the vehicle. Fitted with a new and more powerful Quad Core ARM processor architecture, it is Linux-based and can handle 8 two-way radio connections, which can be increased to 12, 6 Ethernet connections, 4 USB connections, 5 RS-232 serial connections, and can be linked to 12 crew stations.

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Different portable crew member units are available, depending on hierarchy, advanced units with dual or single domain capability allowing setup and control of  radio stations, IP addresses, etc; these are fitted with a 3.5” LCD colour display for each domain, communication being ensured either via Ethernet or Fonet lines. The LIOD-F unit features a bigger screen with communication interface and is used among other as the operator terminal in the WR-40 Langusta self-propelled multiple rocket launcher, or in the rear compartment of the Rosomak infantry fighting vehicle as the information terminal for the infantry team commander. A loudspeakers unit being also available. Should the customer need to create a network a switch unit as well as a router are part of the Fonet MK2 suite.

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The Fonet MK2 follows the red/black concept, red signals carrying classified plain text information while black signals carry encrypted information, dual domain advanced crew member units being able to switch from red to black. Security was one of the main design issues, the Fonet MK2 being able to handle classified information at NATO or Coalition level, while also handling unclassified information at tactical level.

The WB Group new platform integration system is to be installed in Polish command vehicles capable to handle NATO Secret information, and will also be part of the vetronica suite of the Czech Titus and of Hungarian refitted BTRs in the command post version.

Compared to the previous version of the Fonet, the MK2 can work both as client and server while most of the functions such as self-destruction, remote configuration and monitoring, radio compatibility are enhanced. It is also compatible with new terminals equipped with graphic displays.

Photos by P. Valpolini