Defense

September 10, 2012

Army evaluates coalition communications through NIE process

Tags:
Claire Heininger
Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md.
Army photograph by Amy Walker
A company command post is shown at the Network Integration Evaluation 12.2. During a recent lab-based risk reduction event held as part of the Network Integration Evaluation process, the Army demonstrated the ability to share information at the company level across the various mission command systems used by the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia.

The U.S. Army is bringing coalition partners into its future tactical communications network through the Network Integration Evaluation process.

During a risk reduction event held last month at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., the Army demonstrated the ability to share information at the company level across the various mission command systems used by the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia.

The laboratory assessment will feed into the Army’s execution of the Network Integration Evaluations, or NIEs, a series of semi-annual, soldier-driven field evaluations designed to further integrate and mature the Army’s tactical network, and accelerate and improve the way network technologies are delivered to soldiers.

To date, the NIEs have focused on establishing an integrated network baseline that links all echelons of the brigade combat team from the static tactical operations center to the commander on-the-move to the dismounted Soldier. Future NIEs will connect partner nations to that network.

“The NIE will allow us to evaluate communications solutions for coalition forces in a realistic operational environment, and quickly improve them based on Soldier feedback,” said Brig. Gen. Daniel Hughes, director of Army System of Systems Integration, or SoSI. “By using the Aberdeen Proving Ground network labs, we get an early look at potential solutions in preparation for future NIE operational exercises, and allow the coalition partners to share lessons-learned on both technology capability and integration challenges.”

The demonstration scenario required the Army to transmit messages between company command posts for each nation, using industry radios that are under evaluation as part of the NIE. The goal was to combine the information from each country’s mission command technology into a shared commander’s vision of the battlefield, so “(you’re) seeing the same picture I’m seeing,” said C.A. Aiken, a senior systems engineer for the Canadian National Defence Department.

The scenario reflects the reality of circumstances faced by partner nations in theater today, where the force elements they contribute may be task organized at levels far lower than previously envisioned and yet need to communicate with one another directly and dynamically, said British Army Lt. Col. Philip Deans, SoSI international embedded officer. Performing such tests helps determine “how to be interoperable using our native systems, thereby reducing training times and removing costs,” he said.

Senior representatives from the visiting nations said the event offered an opportunity to collaborate on budget and requirements challenges as well as on innovative technology. They expressed interest in the Army’s new Agile Process approach to acquisition, which is designed to procure critical capabilities in a more rapid, cost-effective manner by soliciting mature solutions from industry, then integrating and evaluating them at NIE.

The strategy of integrating network technologies earlier in the development cycle will pay dividends not only for the U.S., but across the coalition, said Brigadier Barry Neil McManus, Australia. “The ability for us to do this from the start of an opportunity is the very clear emphasis here,” he said. “It’s activities like this that bring us closer and closer together.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines August 25, 2014

News: U.S. sends second carrier to Asia amid tensions with China - The Navy is sending a second aircraft carrier strike group to the Asia Pacific region amid new tensions with China over a dangerous aerial encounter between a Chinese interceptor and a Navy P-8 surveillance aircraft. SpaceX rocket explodes during test flight - A SpaceX rocket...
 
 

News Briefs August 25, 2014

China says U.S. plane intercept was professional China’s Defense Ministry has rejected U.S. accusations that a Chinese fighter jet conducted a dangerous intercept of a U.S. Navy surveillance aircraft off the coast of China in international airspace. The ministry issued a statement Aug. 23 attributed to spokesman Yang Yujun calling the U.S. accusations groundless. It...
 
 

Ukraine plans $3 billion boost to defense spending

KIEV, Ukraine – Ukraine’s president announced plans Aug. 24 to boost his country’s defense spending by an estimated 50 percent as government forces seek to overpower pro-Russian separatists in the east. President Petro Poroshenko pledged to spend an extra 40 billion hryvnia ($3 billion) by 2017 during a speech marking Ukraine’s independence from the Soviet...
 

 

NASA awards research facilities, engineering support services contract

NASA has awarded a contract for research facilities and engineering support services to InuTeq, LLC of Greenbelt, Maryland, in support of the Mission Information and Test Systems Directorate at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center, Edwards, Calif. This cost-plus-award-fee contract covers a one-year base period beginning Nov. 1, 2014 and four one-year options, and is valued...
 
 

Navy Awards General Dynamics contract for LCS planning yard services

The U.S. Navy awarded General Dynamics Bath Iron Works a $100 million contract to provide planning yard services for the Littoral Combat Ship program. General Dynamics Bath Iron Works is a business unit of General Dynamics. Bath Iron Works, as the LCS Planning Yard, will provide maintenance and modernization support for all Navy LCS 1...
 
 
boeing-boc

Boeing, BOC Aviation announce order for 82 airplanes

  Boeing announced Aug. 25 an order by BOC Aviation for 50 737 MAX 8s, 30 Next-Generation 737-800s and two 777-300ERs (Extended Range). The order, valued at $8.8 billion at list prices, is the largest in BOC Aviation’...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>