Cutting-edge Technologies in the Battlefield
At the upcoming ‘Digitisation of Battlefield’ seminar jointly organised by SP Guide Publications and FICCI, several technology companies are presenting products and solutions that go to add a distinctive edge in the battlefield. Six of the companies we have featured here include: Elbit Systems, Honeywell, Rockwell Collins, DRS Technologies, Cisco and Gilat Satellite Networks.
Elbit’s Impressive Line-Up of Next-Gen Systems
Elbit Systems has an impressive line-up of next-generation systems and solutions to enable and integrate the future land forces of several countries. The wide range of cutting-edge solutions answers the modern battlefield’s demands for connectivity, interoperability and network-centric warfare (NCW) concepts. These solutions fully integrate and network all land platforms and systems to enable them to react with significantly greater speed, precision and intelligence as a unified force. Accurate situational awareness allows for quick coordination and effective responses to rapidly changing operational scenarios. To achieve this requires advanced technologies involving the latest hardware and software. Leveraging in-house development of underlying technologies, products, platforms and systems, Elbit Systems has developed extensive experience in designing, developing and integrating these technologies into future land digitisation programmes around the world.
Elbit Systems employ a tactical building-block approach to link various applications and levels of command implementing advanced NCW concepts. Configurations comprise tactical com- puters, digital maps, message-handling systems, electro-optics, surveillance radars, ground sensors, EW systems, remote weapons stations, advanced radio communications, tactical modems and routers. This is in addition to specific components developed for customer-specific needs.
Elbit also provides software infrastructure and applications for mobile and airborne platforms, for the individual soldier, and headquarters command and control (C2) applications. Based on these core technology building blocks, Elbit offers customers comprehensive integrated solutions of command, control, communications, computers and intelligence (C4I) for land forces at all levels. The systems process, manage and present massive amounts of data arriving from various sources into a user-friendly format.
Dynamics of Command and Control from DRS Technologies
The FBCB2 (Force XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below) programme is focused on developing a digital battle command information system designed to provide commanders, leaders and soldiers, from brigade to individual soldier and across all the battlefield functional areas, with improved information for command and control and enhanced situational awareness. Supporting the Army’s overall battlefield visualisation efforts, the Appliqué Computer Systems provide a seamless flow of battle command information and interoperability with external command and control and sensor systems.
Incorporating the latest developments in digital information processing and networking, DRS-built FBCB2 systems provide improved combat support for lower-echelon battle command tactical mission requirements, including near real-time command
and control capabilities, enhanced interoperability, situational awareness, and graphical combat area displays, throughout the force structure at the soldier, weapons and platform levels. These systems assure that US armed forces keep pace with advanced technology developments of the 21st century. The situational awareness component collectively displays the geographical location of all weapons, platforms, soldiers, command posts and other facilities and is being used in conjunction with the Army’s Tactical Internet (TI) and celestial communications, a seamless Internet connection, for ease in communication. The TI interfaces with the Army Battle Command Systems (ABCS), collects information from both the operation centre and the individual units and disseminates the data through the FBCB2 computers for improved situational awareness.
The system is intended to support lower-echelon battle command tactical mission requirements, such as real-time situational awareness, target identification and graphical combat area displays. The situational awareness component will collectively display the geographical location of all weapons, platforms, soldiers, command posts and other facilities and will be used in conjunction with the Army’s Tactical Internet, a seamless Internet connection, for ease in communication. The TI interfaces with the Army Battle Command Systems, collects information from both the operation centre and the individual units and then disseminates it through FBCB2 computers for improved situational awareness.
Honeywell Range in Digitisation of Battlefield
Honeywell products are integrated onto a wide range of platforms they support, be it missiles, munitions, tanks, mortars, rockets, fighting vehicles and artillery. They provide precision, information, accuracy, improved communications and digitisation.
Honeywell has battlefield solutions from across the business, everything from bullet resistant protection through to protective clothing and respiratory equipment, as well as navigation and communication solutions that are helping customers to digitise the battlefield.
Honeywell’s range of inertial measurement units, which help missiles and munitions to accurately hit the desired target, even in GPS denied environments. Its family of TALIN products that enable accurate navigation, pointing, stabilisation and fire control in a GPS denied environment for a wide variety of platforms including artillery, mortars tanks and infantry fighting vehicles. Another product central to Honeywell is the GC-27, which enables soldiers to communicate securely, in real-time and share video, voice and other data.
Honeywell products are not always easy to see; often they are integrated deep within the platform and hidden from general view. However, the capabilities they deliver are significant to users— everything from knowing where you are on the battlefield and knowing where your enemy is, to providing you with the ability to move faster than the enemy (known in the industry as shoot and scoot!) and increasing the survivability of the platform.
Rockwell Collins’ Connected Battlespace
With net-enabled systems from Rockwell Collins, the company has put innovative technology in place so the user can exploit every advantage of the connected battlespace. It helps expand ones network’s reach with proven, full-spectrum capability that connects every war fighter in the network with a secure, up-to-the-minute flow of tactical and near real-time situational information, whether it is in the air or on the ground.
The systems keep the force decisively aware with network systems that seamlessly integrate valuable legacy assets with cuttingedge technology. It is fully scalable to the changing needs of your platforms and missions, the solutions are currently in theatre giving you the connectivity and situational awareness you require. Now, Rockwell Collins gives a common operating picture, shared on multiple platforms, to keep you connected and aware. The information you need—when you need it.
Rockwell Collins Army networking solutions include GMR and HMS JTRS; Quint Networking Technology (QNT); Tactical Targeting Network Technology (TTNT); Advanced Tactical Data Link (ATDL); Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), EW-SIGINT; Information assurance solutions; ARC-210 Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)/SRW, ARC-220 HF; Joint Network Node (JNN); Mini-CDL; StrikeHawk Video Downlink Receiver; Nett Warrior; Common Avionics Architecture System (CAAS) and Integrated Soldier solutions.
Rockwell Collins is working to equip ground soldiers with the rugged, lightweight tools needed to make better-informed decisions at the tactical edge of battle. The components for its family of integrated soldier systems provide improved situational awareness and network connectivity capabilities at various echelon levels within a brigade combat team while minimising the size, weight and power impacts to the soldier throughout the life cycle. These solutions heighten the information-assured situational awareness that keeps the soldier alive.
Gilat Solutions on the Move
Net-centric battle has increased the importance of quick-deploy satellite communications on-the-pause and on-the-move. governments and militaries, already attuned to the advantages of fixed and mobile satellite services, recognise the urgent need to access these services, wherever and whenever required.
Gilat’s response is the SatTrooper Military Manpack terminal. This lightweight portable solution provides data, video and telephony under the toughest battle and environmental conditions. The small-size antenna can be set up in just a few minutes with automatic pointing and does not require any tools for assembly. The integrated Gilat MLT-1000 modem supports militaries and warfighters with high availability, secure communications and excellent performance in extremely low SNR conditions.
On today’s net-centric battlefield, war-fighters demand reliable, vehicle-mounted satellite communications for effective information transmission between command and tactical levels. These Satcom on-the-move (SOTM) solutions must be able to perform faultlessly in the most extreme conditions.
Meeting this challenge, Gilat’s integrated SOTM solutions combine stealth-design antennas with low SWaP BUCs and battle-proven modems, delivering: Always-on communications, with no setup time; Fully automated, 1-minute signal acquisition and tracking; Immediate and rapid signal re-acquisition on satellite line of sight blockages; Real-time communications for vehicles moving at high speeds in tough terrain; and over-the-horizon network access with virtually unlimited range.
Cisco’s Innovative Capabilities
Cisco considers the network to be the platform for all communications applications. To this end, Cisco networking technology offers innovative capabilities that incorporate mobility, voice over IP ( VoIP), instant collaboration, video and access to actionable information regardless of physical location. This network-centric approach stresses the role of shared information and situational awareness, which can lead to an increased speed of command and more tightly synchronised efforts involved in nation-building, peacekeeping, war-fighting, emergency response and disaster relief.
DRS’s Appliqué Computer Systems for the US Army’s Force XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below programme supports the US Army’s Blue Force Tracking requirements