Avaya Government Solutions
has completed the first end-to-end, VoIP calls across the Global Information Grid as a part of the Defense Information Systems Agency's field evaluation of its Real Time Services Unified Communication program. The calls were completed using a new technology essential to meet the heightened requirements for assured service and security for the U.S. Department of Defense.
The demonstrated technology is a critical operational capability included in DISA's Multi-Function SoftSwitch upgrade to the DoD's Defense Switch Network. As one of several vendors participating in the MFSS Spiral 1 rollout, Avaya Government Solutions teamed with Acme Packet to supply the secure VoIP communications infrastructure and General Dynamics Information Technology served as the system integrator.
While VoIP is currently employed in many parts of the DoD to save money and streamline operations by using a single network for voice and data traffic, this was the first operational demonstration of a critical new communications protocol and a different communications path than typically used for VoIP communications. The new communications protocol, Assured Services - Session Initiation Protocol, is DoD's unique extension of SIP that incorporates additional provisions for security and service performance to ensure that demanding military command and control requirements can be satisfied. The VoIP calls were completed between Scott Air Force Base in Illinois and Lackland Air Force Base in Texas utilizing end-to-end AS-SIP across the DoD's Internet Protocol backbone network.
Customers across the Defense community will now be able to utilize the IP backbone of the GIG to carry voice and other unified communications services, rather than continuing to operate and maintain separate connections at additional expense just to handle voice traffic.
The same technical solution and core software behind this operational demonstration is the basis of Avaya Government Solutions' platform for unified communications in the Federal market space. A flexible software platform offering a wide range of UC features, the Avaya Aura AS5300 solution provides core capabilities for IP-based voice and video. The AS5300 was specifically designed to satisfy DoD requirements for security, IPv6, and support IP migration to an open AS-SIP environment as defined in DoD's Unified Capabilities Requirements 2008.
Included in this demonstration and the MFSS reference architecture is the Acme Packet Net-Net Session Director Edge Boundary Controller (EBC). Termed a session border controller in the commercial sector, the Acme Packet EBC serves as an UCR-compliant AS-SIP security and control element that provides voice-aware firewall and back-to-back user agent functionality. The Acme Packet EBC also provides extensive connection admission control capabilities and interworking capabilities to ensure seamless interoperability in a multi-vendor, multi-protocol environment.
Both Avaya's AS5300 and Acme Packet's EBC solutions have also passed all interoperability and information assurance testing at the Joint Interoperability Testing Command and have been adopted by DoD as approved products.