Enhanced Position Location Reporting System
Derived from the U.S. Marine Corps' Position Locating Radio System, an important part of U.S. Army information-centric warfare, the Enhanced Position Location Reporting System (EPLRS) is a tactical radio system for ground forces, also called the Army Data Distribution System. It is key in Force XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below (FBCB2) and the EPLRS upgrade of Blue Force Tracker, and to Army Battle Command (ABCS) systems, to which it sends unit identification, position location, and unit operational status data. The system is built by Raytheon.
Information is encrypted by a TSEC/KIV-14. It transmits over a jamming-protected, low probability of intercept, spread spectrum, frequency-hopping ultra-high frequency (UHF) waveform. Army Data Distribution System is also compatible with JTIDS Link 16. The ADDS allows situational awareness of 400 devices.
The main transmission systems are:
- AN/PSQ-6 manpack radio set.
- AN/VSQ-2 surface vehicle radio set.
- AN/ASQ-177C airborne radio set.
- AN/GRC-229 grid reference radio set.
Special reconnaissance teams use the EPLRS to provide coordinates for long-range precision-guided munitions, especially guided bombs such as the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM). With such coordinates, weapons can use the go-onto-location-in-space guidance paradigm, rather than having to track a target, which is perfectly feasible for nonmoving targets.
For support under the restructuring of the United States Army the EPLRS’ data communication and position-location reporting help the logisticians in combat service support functions "push" needed supplies to brigade combat teams.
EPLRS radio is limited in range, certainly to that of a division area, which is often smaller than logistics units need. The communications part of EPLRS is initially being replaced by commercial satellites in Blue Force Tracker, and will be extended further when EPLRS integrates with Warfighter Information Network-Tactical.