Army Prototypes Radio Network Management Software Tool Suite | Item



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The Executive Office Command, Control, Communications – Tactical Program (PEO C3T) hosted a professional development session for leaders at the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, on August 26, 2019, in preparation for the commissioning of the Int …
(Photo credit: US Army)


Integrated tactical network


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(Photo credit: US Army)


Integrated Tactical Network (ITN) verification and validation event


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Command Control and Communications Program Executive Office – Tactical Engineers (PEO C3T) work on software-defined radios, during the Integrated Tactical Network (ITN) verification and validation event at the facility PEO C3T ITN September 11 …
(Photo credit: US Army)


To respond to comments from Soldiers asking for easier and faster ways to plan and manage the military’s advanced software-defined radios, such as the 2-channel leader radio, the service is piloting a new suite of software tools that reduces the time required for initialization, planning and loading a brigade’s worth of radios, from four weeks to minutes.

These new, user-friendly software prototypes also lay the groundwork for a rapid reorganization of unit tasks and allow tasks once performed by advanced transmission soldiers to be performed by general-purpose users for increased operational flexibility.

The Army Command, Control and Communications-Tactical Program Executive Office (PEO C3T) has leveraged its Mid-Level Acquisition Authority for Unified Network Operations (UNO MTA) to develop these capabilities. pioneers in just three months, compared to a traditional fully customized military development effort that would have taken 12 to 18 months or more.

“Our new user-friendly prototype network operations planning and management software tools work hand in hand to initialize, plan and load the value of a brigade of radios faster than ever,” said Cpt. Nicholas Milano, Assistant Product Manager for Tactical Cyber ​​& Network Operations, Project Manager Tactical Network, assigned to PEO C3T. “Each integrated software works in unison in an end-to-end network planning and initialization workflow.”

The prototype software tool suite includes:

– The Integrated Planner: A comprehensive system that plans and creates configuration files for many network elements, including software-defined radios supporting the Army Tactical Network. This planner was developed to integrate or replace existing network planners.

– Network Operations Management System (NOMS): A global prototype system used to manage the network and support unclassified, ranked, and coalition network enclaves with a common look, feel, feel, and functionality.

– Initialization Tool Suite (ITS): Allows soldiers to manage and modify the design of their network of ground network initialization data products in the theater. Data products provide the information necessary to enable end-to-end network connectivity and interoperability across the Army’s Tactical Internet.

– Codex: an authoritative database with a common data model and open application programming interfaces (APIs), allowing standard access to the design of the data product network. APIs allow applications to “talk” to each other.

– Atom: A simplified radio planner that provides an intuitive workflow and an open API that uses data product network design to deliver a radio waveform plan. The Atom prototype will inform improvements and future capabilities and commissioning decisions on the final new solution to support existing and emerging planning requirements, potentially replacing the old joint enterprise network management capability.

–Black Sails: A simplified radio configuration tool that uses the waveform map through an open API to configure software-defined lower tactical internet radios. Atom and Black Sails work hand in hand – Atom creates the map and Black Sails generates the configuration files and loads the radios.

The UNO MTA helps the PEO rapidly deliver a more robust, integrated and standardized set of network management capabilities that enable soldiers from the tactical edge to the corps to plan, configure, manage, monitor, deliver and secure / defend their network assets. UN efforts simplify and reduce the number of tools soldiers use to manage and defend the tactical communications network.

“We are leveraging OTAs to prototype solutions to configure and integrate tactical and enterprise networks, enabling the delivery of information and communications between soldiers at all levels, using hierarchical network resources according to the ‘intention of the commander, “said Milano.

To create the unified radio planning and management software suite, the UNO MTA team focused on prototyping commercial software applications for network planning and management, integrating them into existing government programs, and then quickly insert them into military formations to gain feedback for further improvements and to support future military capability decisions.

The team works with operational units to pilot these software tools and leverage soldier feedback to inform requirements as part of the development of the Army Integrated Tactical Network, or ITN. ITN capabilities work together to enable commanders to take advantage of military and commercially available networks for secure and reliable multipath communications and information sharing between the military, joint and coalition partners. ITN’s commercial equipment includes new expeditionary satellite terminals, line of sight, mobile broadband kits, radio waveforms, leading two-channel radio, single-channel radios, user devices endpoints, network gateways, a unified network operating tools and data products.

As part of a build of development operations, PEO C3T engineers implement the continuous exploration, integration and deployment of software prototypes that include quarterly points of contact with various units including the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division; 1st Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division; and the 10th Mountain Division. By using this common cadence, each program office has the dedicated resources to define, build, test and continuously deliver value to the military, said Keith Whittaker, Network Planning Product Manager for PM Tactical Network.

“We are getting continuous feedback on the prototype design, which is immediately fed back into the software development sprint cycles, to be further refined as part of the next quarterly release cycle,” said Whittaker. “This construction has already proven its worth, allowing program offices to observe soldiers interacting with prototype mockups before a single line of code is written.”

Through calls for tenders and technical exchange meetings, initiated by the inter-network functional team, PEO C3T determined the best options to integrate existing capacities with a minimum of development efforts.

Throughout the development process of the radio planning and management software tool suite, the team deliberately laid the foundation for an open framework and open standards, including open APIs.

“This open architecture ensures that future DoD software and system developments can share information between systems in the most effective and efficient manner and integrate future systems more easily and quickly to improve functionality and capabilities,” said Whitaker said.

Open construction will be critical to future network modernization efforts, as DoD continues to develop integrated capabilities, such as ITN, which includes multiple vendors, hardware, software, configurations, and systems that span multiple programs.

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The U.S. Army Project Manager’s Tactical Network is assigned to the Executive Office’s Tactical Command, Control and Communications program, which develops, acquires, implements and supports the Army Mission Command Network for ensure the readiness of the forces. This critical Army modernization priority provides tactical communications so commanders and soldiers can stay connected and informed at all times, even in the most austere and hostile environments. PEO C3T provides the network to regions around the world, enabling high-speed, high-capacity voice, data and video communications to a user base that includes joint, coalition and other military partners.

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