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MANET supports Agile Combat Employment demonstration
Wave Relay mobile ad hoc networking (MANET) technology from Persistent Systems played a role in a recent USAF demonstration of its Agile Combat Employment (ACE) concept.
The demonstration proved that the USAF ‘has the networking capability to support expeditionary air bases in an A2AD [anti-access area denial] environment while saving hundreds of millions of dollars’, Persistent Systems announced on 15 March.
ACE is a direct response to the near-peer threat posed by China and Russia, by shifting US force projection away from large bases to smaller, less vulnerable and rapidly deployable facilities with minimal staffing (pictured is an ACE exercise at Incirlik Airbase in Turkey in December 2020).
This concept requires a highly versatile and mobile C2 network that can tie together the core elements a combat wing required to plan missions, maintain jets, put them in the air, and defend the airstrip.
In the recent demonstration, Wave Relay ‘connected geographically dispersed units at different military bases, providing users with direct communication, situational awareness, full motion video, and audio’, said Adrien Robenhymer, business development VP for USAF, intelligence community and US Department of Energy programmes at Persistent Systems.
The company also demonstrated automated Primary, Alternate, Contingency, and Emergency communications via satellite, internet, and 5G networks, as well as by local area network for conditions when a BLoS capability is not available.
Robenhymer added that ‘interoperability lessons’ learnt in the latest demonstration feed into the USAF Advanced Battle Management System programme (and therefore ultimately into the Joint All Domain Command and Control effort).
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