DARPA is bringing its Mobile Ad hoc Interoperability Network Gateway (MAINGATE) to Afghanistan. The project, which is nearing completion, is designed to enable compatibility between communications systems.
MAINGATE has two main components: a high capacity wireless IP network radio and the interoperability gateway. The radio provides an IP backbone with ample capacity to support multiple channels of voice, video and data, while the gateway provides interconnectivity for users with incompatible communications equipment, according to DARPA.
DARPA describes MAINGATE as a tactical mid-tier communications capability between front-line troops and higher-level systems like the Warfighter Information Network — Tactical infrastructure. It has already been tested in Army brigade-level exercises as well as with U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan.
According to a DARPA announcement, MAINGATE recently enabled sharing of data between different coalition partners’ systems in Afghanistan so a commander in the base defense operations center could view a video feed of an attempted base intrusion as it occurred.