The US Air Force (USAF) has awarded a contract to Raytheon to modernise cryptographic units for increased secure voice transmission and data traffic.

Under the multiyear $31.1m contract, the company will design and test new lighter, power-efficient devices which use data-scrambling algorithms to encrypt information on one end and then decrypt it on the other.

The new portable shoebox-shaped data-scrambling devices can be used for a range of missions related to airborne, land and maritime combat situations.

Raytheon Network Centric Systems’ Tactical Communication Systems director Jeff Miller said modern encryption standards will be used for seamless communication.