The MRV is a 30-foot long communications van mounted on a Kenworth chassis with a total weight of 44,000 pounds. The rear section of the roof opens to reveal a 2.4 meter satellite antenna, while the rest of the roof contains antennas for use with its radio suite. The inside of the van houses the MRV's screen room that contains its communications equipment and a small office/work area in the front.
The truck has two built-in 20 kW generators which provide self-contained power for the entire operation. There is also a Second Antenna System (SAS) that is mounted on another truck which can be connected to provide a second satellite link. An MRV is assigned to each of the FEMA Mobile Emergency Response Support (MERS) Detachments.
The MRV provides an interface to a variety of communications medium. It contains High Frequency (HF) Radios; Very High Frequency (VHF) Radios and Ultra High Frequency (UHF) Radios, all with telephone interface capability. It also contains a Ku band satellite system which can provide connectivity for telephones, Local and Wide Area Network (LAN/WAN), compressed video teleconferencing, and Broadcast Video. There are also computers with scanning, printing, copying and facsimile capabilities. The MRV also has a small telephone switch to provide limited telephone support.
The MRV provides a mobile communications platform that can quickly deploy to provide the initial means of communications for the disaster response team and/or the Disaster Field Office (DFO) until permanent communications mediums can be restored to the area.
The MRV will normally be deployed in response to disasters as part of FEMA's initial response. When authorized, the MRV can also be deployed to support other special events and exercises.