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 October 22, 2014

News: Northrop challenges 3DELRR contract award - Northrop Grumman has formally issued a protest against the US Air Force’s decision to award its next-generation ground based radar to competitor Raytheon.   Business: Defense firms prefer GOP, but spread campaign cash between political parties - For every campaign contribution from a major arms manufacturer to a Republican candidate...
 
 

News Briefs October 22, 2014

Military converges on scene of Kansas jet crash Military personnel are investigating at the site in southeast Kansas where an Oklahoma Air National Guard fighter jet crashed after a midair collision with another one during a training exercise. The F-16 crashed Oct. 20 in a pasture about three miles northeast of Moline, an Elk County...
 
 
Courtesy photograph

Upgrades ‘new normal’ for armor in uncertain budget environment

Courtesy photograph The current Paladin is severely under-powered and overweight so its speed of cross-country mobility is pretty restricted. The Paladin Integrated Management program is designed to address a number of these we...
 

 

ISR: A critical capability for 21st century warfare

The progressive adaptations and breakthroughs made in the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance arena have changed the way wars are fought, and the way commanders think about the battlespace. “Whether we have airmen exploiting full motion video data or serving downrange in the (Central Command) area of responsibility, these individuals make up an enterprise of 30,000...
 
 

Lockheed Martin teams with Roketsan of Turkey on new standoff missile for F-35

Roketsan and Lockheed Martin signed a teaming agreement Oct. 22 for collaboration on the SOM-J, a new generation air-to-surface Standoff Cruise Missile for the F-35 Lightning II. The SOM system is an autonomous, long-range, low-observable, all-weather, precision air-to-surface cruise missile. The SOM-J variant is tailored for internal carriage on the F-35 aircraft. The companies will...
 
 

Army Operating Concept expands definition of combined arms

The Army Operating Concept, published Oct. 7, expands the idea of joint combined-arms operations to include intergovernmental and special operations capabilities, said Gen. Herbert R. McMaster Jr. The new concept includes prevention and shaping operations at the strategic level across domains that include maritime, air, space and cyberspace, he said. It’s a “shift in emphasis,”...
 




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>