goTenna demonstrates blue force tracking at Hero Games Charity competition modeled after Special Operations training
Josh D., an 18Z Special Forces Operations Sergeant and Founder of Hero Games Charity, was looking for a way to track participants and organizers on a map during their annual give back with honor competition.
Cell phone coverage was not available or spotty within the event parameters. Regarding voice radios, organizers needed something to track everyone involved without having to stop and relay their location via voice, slowing down the competition.
Each year the event brings nearly 100 participants to participate in a grueling 6-hour trail over wet marshes and mountainous terrain, giving them the SOF experience. In addition, the organizers select one Special Operations Forces (SOF) family to be invited into the Bedford, Virginia, community for a week where the Hero Games fitness competition honors a fallen family member. The funds raised by the community cover all expenses for the family, ensuring they have the best possible experience.
Hero Charity Games was provided with 9 Pro X devices for the event and on-site support to demonstrate a mobile mesh network similar to blue force tracking or austere medicine response in an off-grid environment.
The main operations center was located back at the headquarters, where attendees, including members of the Gold Star family, could track all participants at once.
The nine Pro X devices were distributed as follows:
The image above shows HQ connected to the various relay nodes spread out along the route of the fitness competition.
As a result of the test, goTenna’s team, the organizers, and attendees could track everything happening during the event while at HQ. The longest distance between the two nodes was 2.38 miles. Given its elevation of roughly 30 feet, the relay located at the silo provided a crucial connection between HQ and the rest of the organizers.
A critical and unrivaled off-the-shelf tool that ensures inter-team communications are maintained. The mesh network afforded my team a lightweight option that, when paired with an Android device, allowed the team to exchange mission-critical information through text or data. The tracking capability afforded my Command and Control element increased situational awareness of force disposition. I’ll take goTenna Pro in the most austere of environments after seeing it in action.
Hero Games Charity Founder
During the next event, goTenna plans to deploy additional team members to join the teams on the ground during the competition to assist with off-grid connectivity.
The Gold Star family and friends watched the competition's progress on the big screen back at headquarters.