From Goverment Computer News (GCN):
WiFi is taking flight
By Doug Beizer,
Tucked in a corner of an airplane hangar in Iraq, an Air Force mechanic is repairing a plane’s hydraulic landing gear system when he hits a snag and needs to refer to the aircraft’s maintenance manual.
He doesn’t stop working to search for a paper manual, which may or may not be in the hangar. Instead, he pulls out a ruggedized tablet computer to access the LAN. Within minutes, he has downloaded the information he needs from a U.S.-based database and is back to work on the plane.
That scenario is a reality, said Tom Badders, director of wireless strategic development for Telos Corp. of Ashburn, Va.
Ubiquitous network connection is happening, thanks in large part to the proliferation of wireless networks for both civilian and Defense agencies.
Wireless makes sense
In many cases, wireless makes the most sense, whether it’s because of the devices people are using or because of the physical requirements of bases, buildings or conference rooms.
Telos has installed wireless networks at 85 of the Air Force’s 108 bases as well as 11 other Air Force sites worldwide, Badders said. “Primarily, it’s for maintenance and logistics operations, so we put wireless LAN coverage on flight lines, inside hangars, back shops, wherever maintenance and logistics operations are taking place.”
The wireless infrastructure extends the Air Force’s enterprise network to those whose job is to get aircraft back in the air, and increases the service’s supply chain efficiencies. Constant connection to the network lets personnel tie into maintenance databases, check tech orders on supply and logistics applications, fix equipment, update orders, read technical manuals, and order and track parts through the supply chain.
x-posted to the usual places