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WESTINGHOUSE/TCOM TEAM WINS $100 MILLION DRUG INTERDICTION CONTRACT

WESTINGHOUSE/TCOM TEAM WINS $100 MILLION DRUG INTERDICTION CONTRACT
 BALTIMORE, Feb. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. Customs Service has awarded its largest-ever aerostat surveillance systems contract -- valued at approximately $100 million -- to a team of the Westinghouse Electronic Systems Group and Columbia, Md.-based TCOM L.P.
 Westinghouse will serve as prime contractor for the Tethered Aerostat Radar Systems (TARS) project which provides for the site construction, installation and support of four systems to be used for drug interdiction and surveillance at sites along the southern border of the United States and in the Bahamas. The contract includes options for three additional sites, plus spare systems.
 The TARS surveillance systems are designed to detect and track drug smuggling aircraft and boats entering the United States. The new systems will join 11 already in operation by the Department of Defense, completing an "electronic picket fence" that provides virtually unbroken coverage along the southern border -- from the Atlantic to the Pacific oceans.
 "Westinghouse is making a significant contribution to the Customs Service's efforts in stopping drugs at our borders," said Richard A. Linder, president of the firm's Electronic Systems Group. "TARS expands coverage by reliably detecting airborne and maritime targets with an improved version of the Westinghouse systems already in the field."
 James J. Bitoni, president and chief executive officer of TCOM L.P., added: "The teaming of technology leaders TCOM and Westinghouse provides the DoD and Customs Service with the most reliable surveillance platform as well as the most effective radar available for this mission. It is a great honor that our 'best-of- both-worlds' approach was chosen, and we will do everything in our power to ensure the fulfillment of this vital mission."
 According to the Customs Service, the success of aerostat-based radar surveillance has been clearly demonstrated by the sharp decline in drug traffic within the areas covered by the systems currently installed. Traffickers have been forced to utilize longer and riskier flight routes or have, in many cases, abandoned the use of aircraft altogether. The additional installations are expected to further reduce the level of activity by closing key surveillance gaps.
 The TARS program features a 71-meter-long aerostat designed to carry a 3,000-pound radar payload to 15,000 feet, 24 hours a day for up to 30 consecutive days. Its strong, lightweight, six-layer fabric gives the balloon greater lift capacity and resistance to weather and other hazards than any other available aerostat, while its high- strength, patented tether provides maximum protection from lightning.
 The aerostat will carry Westinghouse's improved version of the solid-state Low Altitude Surveillance System radar that satisfies new Customs Service requirements while enhancing performance and reliability. A new tracking system headlines a set of improvements that includes an improved signal data processor and an enhanced beacon target extraction system. The new radar also boasts an agile frequency generator and radio frequency receiver.
 The Westinghouse Electronic Systems Group is a leading supplier of airborne and ground radar, space electronics, air traffic control, and command and control systems. Although many of these technologies were originally developed by Westinghouse for its U.S. Department of Defense customers, the company is now applying them to new challenges in diverse new, non-defense markets.
 Westinghouse has a set strategic objective of rapidly diversifying within its markets and achieving an equal mix of defense and non- defense business by 1995.
 TCOM L.P., headquartered in Columbia, is a world leader in lighter-than-air technology.
 -0- 2/11/92
 /NOTE: Glossy photos are available upon request./
 /CONTACT: Bryan Wiggins of Westinghouse, 410-993-6320, or Steve Silvoy of TCOM, 410-312-2400/
 (WX) CO: Westinghouse Electronic Systems Group; TCOM L.P.; U.S. Customs
 Service ST: Maryland IN: CPR SU: CON


MH -- DC002 -- 8758 02/11/92 11:20 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Feb 11, 1992
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