Platforms and Hardware Support

Article excerpt

The Army Airborne Command and Control System (A^sup 2^C^sup 2^S) provides the maneuver commander and his staff with a highly mobile, self-contained and reliable airborne digital command post. This highly mobile system allows the commanders of the units of employment and units of action to maintain situational awareness (SA) and exercise command and control (C^sup 2^), either from a temporary remote site or while moving through the battlespace. The Army's current utility helicopter, the UH-60L Black Hawk (and newer models), will host the A^sup 2^C^sup 2^S. This battle command system will consist of two components: an A-kit and a B-kit. The A-kit is permanently affixed to the airframe and consists of the antennas, wiring and aircraft interfaces (power, structural and more) to enable the B-kit to be installed in the host platform. The B-kit consists of operator positions/ workstations, computer systems and necessary communications devices to host and support the digital C^sup 2^ process.

Subcomponents of the B-kit include the maneuver commander's environment (MCE) and an integrated suite of radio communications equipment. The MCE are those components that the system operators physically interact with during mission execution. The multiprocessor unit (MPU), part of the MCE, is where the A^sup 2^C^sup 2^S will host selected ABCS software programs including MCS, ASAS, AFATDS, FBCB^sup 2^, AMDWS, BCS^sup 3^, GCCS-A and other software applications. These software programs will provide crucial battlefield information, allowing commanders to make sound and timely decisions and take decisive action.

The Mounted Battle Command on the Move (MBCOTM) provides the unit of action and unit of employment maneuver commander and his staff with a highly mobile, self-contained and reliable combat vehicle-based digital command post. The MBCOTM mission equipment platform consists of a suite of communication and digital equipment/software integrated on a combat platform to enable commanders to influence the battle while maneuvering across the battlefield. The MBCOTM provides the maneuver commander situational awareness and a common operational picture, which allows the commander to maintain situational understanding while moving and physically separated from a fixed command post. This battle command system will consist of two components: an A-kit and a B-kit. The A-kit, permanently affixed to the vehicle, consists of the antennas, wiring, and vehicle interfaces (power, structural and more) to enable installation of the B-kit in the host platform. The B-kit consists of operator positions/workstations, computer systems and necessary communications devices to host and support the digital C^sup 2^ process. A principal subcomponent of the B-kit is a multiprocessor computer unit (MPU). The MPU will host selected ABCS software programs including MCS, ASAS, AFATDS, FBCB^sup 2^, AMDWS, GCCS-A and other software applications. These software programs will provide crucial battlefield information to commanders. The MBCOTM program will integrate this capability into three combat vehicle types: Bradley (all variants), Stryker Command Variant (CV) and Humvee.

The Standardized Integrated Command Post System (SICPS) program integrates Army battle command systems (ABCS), global combat support systemArmy (GCSS-A), tactical communication systems, intercoms, large-scale video displays and local area networks (LANs) into standard Army command post platforms (vehicles, shelters and tents). It is primarily a nondevelopmental effort that integrates state-of-the-art government off-the-shelf (GOTS) and commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment into tactically mobile platforms that support the operational needs of the Current Force and the new Stryker brigade combat teams now being fielded, and it has direct applicability to the Future Force. …