The following are some of the most interesting projects that Ross Halgren and Haltec Enterprises have been involved in as part of an employment or contracting relationship with various companies and organisations. For information security reasons, only public domain information is provided in this section. Such information was released by the companies and organisations in the form of technical presentations, brochures and videos distributed at public forums.
1 - Sydney Police Centre and RAAF Base Tindal (FA-18) Voice
Switching & Control Systems were designed and installed by AWA Defence &
Transmission Division between 1985 and 1989. Both systems employed the AWANET-30
ring network which supported hybrid switching technology. Audio channels such
as radio, telephone and intercom were circuit switched using standard 64Kbit/s
PCM whilst data connections could either be circuit switched or packet switched
using a Token Ring protocol. Unlimited voice conferencing was supported on two
64 kbit/s channels only, irrespective of the number of conferencees. This was
enabled by the distributed ring switching architecture and was unique to AWANET,
allowing Sydney Police Centre radio operators to conference police operating
in multiple areas with no blocking of conference connections. All conferencing
was controlled via user-friendly touch screens - being a new technology for
that period. Switching nodes in the AWANET-30 ring could be centralised or distributed
using a mix of electrical or fibre-optic interconnect cables. The technology
behind AWANET-30 and its subsequent upgrade, AWANET-100 was developed over 5
years by AWA Research Laboratory with the support of the Australian Industrial
Development & Incentives Board. Ross Halgren was the lead developer of the
Project 2 - In 1985, IKL/HDW and Kockums were selected as the two prime contractors for the study phase of the multi-billion dollar New Construction Submarine (NCS) project leading to the supply to the Royal Australian Navy of the new Collins class submarines. As was often the case, AWA ended up on the losing team, but in the absence of a crystal ball, this team did offer a better potential outcome for a company of AWA's Defence background and R&D calibre. AWA sided with the Combat System team led by Signaal and Philips. Signaal recognised the benefits of the AWA fibre-optic ring technology as the basis of the MILNET data bus for their proposed 4th Generation Combat System. Rockwell on the other hand, being the alternative JV partner for AWA and unfortunately the lead supplier on the eventual winning team, did not offer AWA anything more than the possibility of manufacturing their power supplies!
Given that the proposed MILNET fibre-optic data bus was integral to the JV, Signaal sent one of their key system designers to AWA to understand the technology capabilities and similarly Ross Halgren was seconded to Signaal in Holland to understand the Signaal system requirements. The MILNET fibre-optic data bus was designed to support existing AWANET capabilities such as packet data and radio/intercom/telephone communications as well as supporting optronic video systems and wideband and narrowband analog audio signals received from proprietary Signaal acoustic sensor systems. MILNET would distribute all video and acoustic signals in digital form to multiple redundant pre-processor units, each of which could be downloaded with the software appropriate to a particular sensor array, then distribute the pre-processed signals to multiple-redundant post processor units and thence to multiple redundant multi-function combat consoles. The aim of the MILNET based 4th Generation Combat System architecture was to eliminate stranded processing and display resources and avoid video and acoustic sub-system failures characteristic of previous hard-wired architectures. The RAN were so impressed with the concept, that they funded AWA $500K to demonstrate that MILNET could be developed based on AWANET technology, which they did, although at the end of the day, the main deciding factor was the better and preferred Kockums hull design.
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