A foundation designed to promote aquaculture was incorrectly identified in Washington Business Monday. The group is the American International Aquaculture Foundation. (Published 12/16/87)

Unisys Corp.'s defense systems unit, based in McLean, has won a $450 million contract from the Department of Commerce to produce the first 195 radar systems of a nationwide radar-based weather detection and information network called Next Generation Weather Radar (NEXRAD).

Unisys will provide radar systems to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for use by the National Weather Service, the Federal Aviation Administration and the Air Force.

The NEXRAD system improves detection of severe weather by increasing warning times for such hazards as tornadoes, high winds, hail and flash floods, Unisys said. With the new system, threatened areas will be identified better, warnings will be more accurate and there should be fewer false alarms, according to company.

The radar systems will provide coverage in the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii, the Caribbean and U.S. military bases in Europe and the Pacific.

NEXRAD will be the first nationwide network in the world to use Doppler radars sensitive to frequency changes that can "see" into storm cells for weather detection. Operators can then better detect and measure such factors as precipitation, internal storm motion, and direction of movement.

Unisys says the system will be relatively cheap to build and maintain because it will use off-the-shelf hardware and software produced by the company. This design also allows the system, which has an expected life of 20 years, to be highly reliable and easy to expand and upgrade.

The 195 radar systems should be in operation by 1995.

Airline Media Associates Inc., an Arlington firm, will expand its publishing efforts in January by adding a new publication, Commuter/Regional Airline News International. The newsletter will be based in Britain, according to Joseph S. Murphy, president of Airline Media.

Commuter/Regional Airline News International will be a management newsletter for commuter and regional airlines throughout the world except for the United States and Canada. Airline Media currently covers commuter and regional developments in the United States in a companion publication called Commuter/Regional Airline News. Beginning in January, the company will expand that newsletter's coverage to include Canada.

Alison Chambers, former editor of Commuter World magazine and a former staff member of Flight International, has been named Editor of Commuter/Regional Airline News International.

Planning Research Corp. of McLean has received a $9 million contract from the Air Force to test the effectiveness of Air Force weapons and aircraft at four bases in Florida, New Mexico and Arizona. Under a five-year contract, Planning Research will test, evaluate results and make recommendations to the Tactical Air Command based on systems that use distance-measuring equipment, airborne sensors and inertial measurement equipment that measures position and attitude of aircraft.

Resource Consultants Inc. of Vienna will analyze pay grade and pay structure costs for the Navy under a $1.4 million contract with the service's personnel research and development center in San Diego.

Under the contract, Resource Consultants will perform economic analyses to project how much will be spent on Navy compensation. A large portion of the Navy's budget goes to meet its payroll.

Analysts from Resource Consultants will use mathematical models to project, for example, how much money will be spent on compensation based both on the rate at which people are leaving the Navy and on how many new recruits are entering service.

RCI, a professional and technical services firm, provides technical, engineering and professional support for government and private industry clients in 18 locations in the United States and Europe.

A new organization designed to promote a better understanding of aquaculture, the growing of fish and plant life in a controlled environment, was recently formed in Washington. The International Aquaculture Foundation will be headed by John R. Ale, who has been named president of the foundation.

"Aquaculture gives you a better, fresher, healthier product and a more stable product," Ale said.

Ale said aquaculture is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Fish produced by aquaculture now account for 12 percent of the world market, and Ale estimates that the share will reach 20 percent by the year 2000.

The foundation has an advisory board of 20 members and will provide information about legislation, regulations, environmental issues, business developments, government actions and health and nutrition issues affecting aquaculture.

Ale said that while there are a few other aquaculture organizations "floating around," until now,the business has for the most part been organized along regional and species lines.

Atlantic Research Corp.'s systems and applied sciences division will provide systems engineering for the Air Force under a $9 million contract with the service's aeronautic systems division.

The Fairfax-based company will provide technical support for the product performance agreement center, a centralized area that holds warranties and other agreements for equipment that the Air Force has purchased.

In a separate development, the same Atlantic Research division won a $1 million contract with the Air Force for systems engineering at the service's communication system evaluation lab. Under the one-year contract, ARC will set up, operate and upgrade a laboratory that provides radio frequency signals to Air Force communications systems.

Announcements of news and developments affecting Washington area companies should be sent to M.B. Christie, Researcher, Business News Department, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Information must be received the Monday before publication to be considered for inclusion in Washington Business.