Company History

The History of Thales Defense & Security, Inc. (TDSI)

In 1964, TDSI began as Racal Communications, Inc., focused exclusively on the production and fielding of HF Receivers to the US Defense market.  Over 50 years later, as Thales Defense & Security, Inc., we operate eight distinct business areas, in addition to full-scale manufacturing operations, to support a broad range of mission critical technologies for defense and commercial customers worldwide.   TDSI is proud of our first-to-market legacy and our rich heritage in supporting our mission critical customers globally.

TDSI Timeline

Thales eSecurity Federal business merges with TDSI.  TDSI deploys our latest IMBITR 2-ch Handheld Radio with elite Army units (173rd, 3/2-CR and 1/508th).  TDSI wins Army Leader Radio contract.  Tampa Microwave wins the SOCOM SDN-Lite contract.  TDSI adds additional four resellers for our Mobile Satellite Communications business.


Thales Sensors & Missile Systems business merges with TDSI.  TDSI selected to equip the Army’s new Security Force Assistance Brigades (SFAB) 1 & 2 award and signs six resellers for Mobile Satellite Communications.


TDSI selected as Iridium Value Added Manufacturer (VAM) and begins development of our new LINK family of Iridium NEXT ground terminals


Changed name to Thales Defense & Security, Inc. (TDSI).  Thales USA Defense business merges with TDSI and signs Joint venture agreement with DRS for Advanced Acoustics Concepts (AAC) business.


TCI acquires stake in Tampa Microwave, LLC.  TCI acquires Visionix.


TCI is awarded a role as subcontractor to L-3 Communications on the JP2048 contract in Australia for the HF communications systems aboard two amphibious ships.




TCI delivers the 100,000th MBITR to USSOCOM


The AN/PRC-148 JEM officially becomes the 1st JTRS radio in production with the award by the U.S. Air Force JTRS Program Office, Electronic Systems Center, Hanscom AFB, for the purchase of more than 1,200 units.


JTRS Enhanced MBITR (JEM) is SCA certified. TCI merges with MacKay.


Racal Communications, Inc. changes its name to Thales Communications, Inc. (TCI)


RCI acquires RACAL Avionics and wins JTRS contract


RCI wins the 1st production contract for MBITR with SOCOM


RCI wins contract for MSHR radios from the FBI. MSHR is the 1st digital radio produced.


RCI wins contract for Scope Shield II Development Program.


RCI acquires Analytic Communications Systems (ACS)


1st Proxy Agreement signed; Dr. Louis W. Tordella is elected as the 1st Senior Proxy.


RCI acquires REGCO


The Provisional Board of Directors for Racal Communications, Inc. (RCI) decides to manufacture 100 RA-17C12 receivers. This is the 1st official product to be produced by RCI.   Racal Communications, Inc. (RCI) incorporated in Delaware. 1st company location is at 8440 Second Avenue, Silver Spring, Maryland.

  • Incorporated as Racal Communications in 1964
  • Headquartered in Clarksburg, MD
  • Wholly-owned Subsidiary of Thales
  • Free of Foreign Ownership, Control or Influence
  • Serving Defense, Federal and Commercial Markets
  • MBITR – the World’s 1st multiband handheld radio
  • Now fielding the IMBITR – the world’s first 2-channel handheld radio
  • Approximately 300,000 radios fielded to the US & Coalition Armed Forces
  • World’s smallest man-portable X/Ku/Ka satellite terminals
  • Developing the next generation of Tactical EW Solutions
  • Scorpion HMD selected for Army’s Air Warrior and Air National Guard Programs
  • World’s only full-color HMD coupled with state-of-the-art Motion Tracking
  • Thales’ Combat Management System is the nucleus of the Navy’s firepower
    aboard the Littoral Combat Ship
  • Sole-Source to the USCG and USN for high-power, maritime HF Systems
  • The US Navy standard dipping SONAR technology (ALFS)
  • Industry-leading SWAP design for base station, vehicular and portable terminals