New Zealand's Ministry of Defence (MoD) issued a request for information on Nov. 12 for potential options to restore and increase the communication capabilities of both the 430-foot multirole vessel HMNZS Canterbury and the Royal New Zealand Navy's two 279-foot offshore patrol vessels, (OPV).

The upgraded communications capability is expected to be in service until the ships are decommissioned, circa 2035.

The MoD said the existing integrated communications system, which utilizes a quad-core, fiber-optic cable network to reach the majority of the user terminals, is becoming increasingly difficult to support and provides insufficient external V/UHF radio capacity. 

The Canterbury, commissioned in 2007, has 56 user terminals throughout the ship; the OPVs, commissioned in 2010, each have 34 user terminals.

The upgraded communications capability will ideally be delivered as early as possible, and responses are required by Jan. 20, 2017.

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