U.S. Marines with the 8th Communication Battalion, II Marine Expeditionary Force Information Group, which provides assured command and control to II MEF commanders during Exercise Cold Response 2022, introduced PacStar Radio over Internet Protocol, a critical communications capability which enables instantaneous and simultaneous two-way radio communication via local and global Internet networks.
The first transmission between Marines during Exercise Cold Response ’22 in Norway and II MEF Headquarters at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina was as easy as a tap on a laptop or the press of a button. on a secure phone. According to Chief Warrant Officer 2 Dustin Schuitt, a space and propagation engineering officer assigned to the 8th Communication Battalion based in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, this was the first time a unit within du II MEF had been using this capability since the service retired the previous RoIP TRICS and WAVE client solutions.
Schuitt, a technical expert in the Corps communications community, explained that PacStar RoIP is a smaller, lighter, portable, and highly secure communications system that enables radio transmissions using existing Internet networks. Previous systems relied on large amounts of equipment, more labor and assembly time, while RoIP significantly reduces logistics effort and costs.
Marines had to run a system of wires, connectors and junction boxes for remote radio communications before PacStar RoIP. Now a Marine can carry a small PacStar kit, compared to multiple Marines carrying multiple large boxes of equipment as before, Schuitt said.
A smaller loadout allows for a more agile force, able to deploy these capabilities anywhere in the world faster and easier than ever before.
The 8th Communication Battalion maintains and defends communication networks to facilitate II MEF’s ability to command and control forces. PacStar RoIP paves the way for the future of communication within the II MEF Information Group, providing commanders with a more secure and efficient means of command and control in the information battlespace. Exercise Cold Response 22, a Norwegian national readiness and defense exercise involving NATO allies and partners, provides a unique opportunity to put this new capability to use.
II MEF’s implementation of modern and innovative capabilities aligns with the Marine Corps‘ move toward modernization, as outlined in Force Design 2030. 8th Communication Battalion answers that call in the face of 21st century security challenges , displaying its agility in a dynamic security environment.