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The Air Force's New Mini Crypto Chip

The Air Force's new Mini Crypto chip will secure communications and data between systems like unmanned aerial vehicles and explosive ordnance disposal robots. Mini Crypto is a self-contained encryption engine that generates its own session-based "key." Designed to be small and lightweight, it is about the size of a cracker. Its power requirement is roughly the same as a hearing aid, at 400 milliwatts, meaning it can be installed on equipment carried by one-person parties operating as scouts and forward air controllers. Airmen in the field rely on secured communications to accomplish their missions without enemy knowledge of their plans. The chip can be used in joint and coalition environments, providing tailored access to data. Data can be segregated based on a need-to-know using Mini Crypto.

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