Harris Corporation Provides Upgraded Communication System to Continental Airlines with OpenSky Technology
Houston, TX and Boston, MA, — Continental Airlines, the world’s fifth-largest airline, has successfully upgraded its radio communication system at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston with OpenSky® technology from Harris Corporation (NYSE:HRS), an international communications and information technology company.
The IP-based (Internet Protocol) digital OpenSky system — with Harris P5300 portable and M5300 mobile digital radios — provides Continental Airlines enhanced system monitoring capabilities, improved over-the-air, talk-group management and increased system capacity in one of the airline’s busiest and largest travel hubs.
“When Hurricane Ike tore through Houston in 2008, the resulting floods hampered our communication system. While we were able to get the network back up and running quickly, we recognized that we needed an advanced digital network based on a reliable IP backbone to avoid interruptions like this in the future,” said Corey Hoffman, manager of airport communications, Continental Airlines. “OpenSky was the logical choice for the new system. By pairing the network with P5300 and M5300 radios, we got an end-to-end digital solution that was both easy-to-use and robust. We also got the system implemented and users transitioned in about 45 days — far faster than we anticipated — thanks to the hard work of Harris and its local network solution provider, Dailey-Wells.”
The Harris OpenSky system enables Continental Airlines to quickly add and adjust talk-groups for vendors and partner airlines, which are regularly shifted to accommodate traveler needs. The system also allows the airline to add new personnel to the system, whether they are ticketing agents, ramp operators, cargo and luggage handlers, gate operators, online runners or safety personnel. Every month, more than 1.2 million travelers move through George Bush Intercontinental Airport and nearly a million calls are transmitted over the OpenSky system.
“After Hurricane Ike, Continental Airlines was in the unique position to easily migrate its communications infrastructure to Harris IP-based OpenSky technology to increase system capacity, while streamlining airline operations,” said Craig Moore, vice president, North America sales, Harris Public Safety and Professional Communications. “The transition process was as simple as possible, including keeping the interface of the new smaller and lighter radios similar to the legacy ones. We have provided Continental Airlines with a reliable, modern radio system they’ll be using well into the future.”
Harris P5300 portable and M5300 radios are software-defined digital radios that provide multi-mode functionality with digital voice and IP data for efficient and reliable communications in the 800 MHz or 900 MHz frequency bands. The P5300 and M5300 support multiple applications including OpenSky, EDACS® and Analog Conventional modes.
OpenSky technology offers digital voice and packet data communications, using a high-performance IP backbone network. OpenSky’s high-quality, digital-voice-trunking capabilities and packet data communications features directly address the needs of both utility and public safety users. OpenSky is capable of expanding to meet future requirements. In addition, OpenSky networks are based on the widely accepted IS-732 protocol to support mobile applications — with end-to-end TCP/IP connectivity, simplifying application-to-network integration.
Harris Public Safety and Professional Communications is a leading supplier of assured communications® systems and equipment for public safety, federal, utility, commercial and transportation markets — with products ranging from the most advanced IP voice and data networks, to industry leading multiband, multimode radios, to public safety-grade broadband video and data solutions. With more than 80 years of experience, Harris supports over 500 systems around the world.
About Harris Corporation
Harris is an international communications and information technology company serving government and commercial markets in more than 150 countries. Headquartered in Melbourne, Florida, the company has approximately $5 billion of annual revenue and more than 15,000 employees — including nearly 7,000 engineers and scientists. Harris is dedicated to developing best-in-class assured communications® products, systems, and services. Additional information about Harris Corporation is available at www.harris.com.