General Dynamics C4 Systems (GDC4S), a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics, tries to fight the "fog of war." The "C4" stands for command, control, communications networking, and computing. The unit makes communications and IT systems for military and business customers. Products include battlefield communications systems, combat search and rescue systems, ruggedized computers and displays (made by subsidiary General Dynamics Itronix), and encryption systems. Applications include air traffic control, radio and television broadcasts, and wireless communications. The US government is a major customer; GDC4S also does work for the militaries of Australia, Canada, Germany, and the UK, as well as NATO.
With the US engaged in war on two fronts, business has been good for General Dynamics in recent years. GDC4S is part of the company's largest business segment, Information Systems & Technology, and it employs about 11,000 people.
In 2012 General Dynamics bought IPWireless (renamed General Dynamics Broadband), a maker of broadband wireless infrastructure and network access equipment, in an effort to boost its presence in the commercial networking market. The company, which will primarily help public safety organizations with their municipal broadband networks, was made a subsidiary of GDC4S.
In 2011 the US Marine Corps. tapped GDC4S to help with the construction of combat operations facilities. That same year the company won a contract with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory to build two large beam waveguide antennas in Australia for the Deep Space Network, which enables precision communications for interplanetary flights. Also that year General Dynamics awarded GDC4S with its first acquisition in years. The company bought Fortress Technologies, a provider of secure wireless networking equipment for the US military and other government agencies.
GDC4S is one of four General Dynamics divisions devoted to IT products and services. The others are General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems (systems development, integration, and operations support for missile systems), General Dynamics Information Technology (large-scale IT project management), and General Dynamics United Kingdom (systems integration partner to the UK Ministry of Defence).
The company operates from nearly 20 US facilities and four in Canada.
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