Wireless Applications

Project Athena Provides Surveillance and Intelligence for Border Control

April 19, 2006

Raytheon's multi-sensor, multi-source information system improves detection, identification, tracking, fusion, and dissemination of actionable intelligence to Department of Homeland Security law enforcement agencies.

TEWKSBURY, Mass. /PRNewswire/ -- Raytheon Company's Project Athena successfully completed an operational demonstration along the southwest border of Texas to provide persistent multi-domain surveillance and "actionable intelligence" to a joint interagency task force in support of Department of Homeland Security (DHS) law enforcement agencies.

The Athena integrated C4ISR (command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) and sensor system was rapidly fielded to support the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Rio Grande Sector and 14 other interagency partners. During the six-week mission, Athena and CBP successfully detected, intercepted, and deterred transnational threats, drugs, and alien smuggling across the U.S.-Mexican border over a large joint operations area, including 160 miles of coastline, 120 miles of land border, and nine ports of entry.

"We're pleased to deliver demonstrated capability to secure our nation's borders today," said Mary Petryszyn, Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems (IDS) Joint Battlespace Integration vice president. "Project Athena continues to successfully provide our Homeland Security agencies the power of knowledge to help defend our freedom and to act with assurance within the Joint Battlespace environment—sea, air and land."

During the DHS effort named "Operation Gulfview," Raytheon IDS' Project Athena integrated multi-sensor and multi-source information to enable efficient and improved detection, identification, tracking, fusion, and dissemination of actionable intelligence to DHS security law enforcement agencies.

From the mission's tactical operations center, CBP and joint interagency operators used Athena's shared situational awareness picture to coordinate, synchronize, and execute simultaneous air, ground, and maritime operations to more efficiently task the best interdiction assets for the situation. Athena surveillance sensors enhanced homeland security efforts by filling coverage gaps while maximizing operational security. Athena also improved knowledge regarding illicit narcotics trafficking on North Padre Island and in the Gulf of Mexico waters and coastal areas. Results included identifying previously unknown activity, focusing enforcement efforts instead of arbitrarily patrolling areas with unknown traffic (chasing ghosts), and tracking vessels that crossed the U.S.-Mexican border.

The operational agility demonstrated by Athena was essential to mission success. For Operation Gulfview, Athena was installed, training was completed, and the system was operational within three weeks of the award. This included the deployment of 200 miles of secure, high capacity/availability wireless networks, integrated air-ground surveillance sensors, computing and communications (C2) equipment, and improved C2 and processing services.

Integrated Defense Systems is Raytheon's leader in Joint Battlespace Integration, providing affordable, integrated solutions to a strong international and domestic customer base, including the U.S. Missile Defense Agency and the U.S. armed forces.

Raytheon Company, with 2005 sales of $21.9 billion, is an industry leader in defense and government electronics, space, information technology, technical services, and business and special mission aircraft. With headquarters in Waltham, Mass., Raytheon employs 80,000 people worldwide.

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