Edwin Trinh: Taking to the High Seas for Booz Allen’s PNT Practice
Next week is National Engineers Week, and we want to talk about PNT, or Positioning, navigation, and timing. PNT data powers everything from the smart phone in your pocket to fields as diverse as the military, transportation, communications, and energy sectors. Booz Allen is at the forefront of building PNT solutions and developing the architectures that make PNT systems capable, resilient, and effective when it counts most.
How does PNT keep ships and their data safe? Cybersecurity engineer Edwin Trinh shares highlights from his work—and his career journey with Booz Allen.
A childhood passion leads to PNT
Trinh’s PNT career has an early beginning. “Early in my childhood, I was interested in how servers and computers were put together,” he said. “I’ve always been known as the go-to IT person among family and friends.”
In college, he was introduced to networking and cybersecurity, and his curiosity about technology increased. He moved into an IT-networking role within months of joining Booz Allen—a path that led to his current role traveling around the world tracking and collecting positioning, navigation, and timing data.
Making connections for ships and data
What does the day-to-day work of PNT look like?
Trinh has supported numerous demos on the maritime cyber testbed known as TRUDI, an acronym for Tactical Reconfigurable Underway Demonstration Interface. In one engagement, he set up TRUDI to collect GPS, heading, automatic identification system, and weather data on a research vessel in the Gulf of Mexico.
Trinh also helps his team gather data from the actual ship sensors. “This is done by using computers and a bunch of serial to USB cables,” he explained. “The connection point is a hub for all sensor data before it gets passed to the captain and electronic chart plotter.”