BAE Systems has demonstrated a software tool that will aid manned and unmanned aircraft to share data and carry out operations when communications are denied.
The semi-autonomous software, developed for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and US Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Distributed Battle Management (DBM) effort, is designed to ensure continued access to information even in communication denied environments.
According to David Hiltz, director of the Planning and Control Technologies Directorate at BAE Systems, the software also provides a set of automated decision aids which improve the ability of operators and pilots to manage events during air-to-air and air-to-ground combat.
"Our DBM software delivers these automated decision aids that provide mission execution options and the ability to maintain a consistent mission representation and status across all platforms, which allows warfighters to make better, faster combat decisions to ensure mission safety and completion," Hiltz said in a statement.
Jarod Kallberg, technology development manager for the distributed battle management program, told Jane's that live and simulated aircraft, fitted with BAE Systems' Anti-Access Real-time Mission Management System (ARMS) planning and control software and the Contested Network Environment Situational Understanding System (CONSENSUS) – a sensemaking and situational awareness tool which fuses data from multiple sources – flew numerous sorties during a 11-day demonstration in September 2017 to examine the effectiveness of the software. The company announced the results of the flight tests in February 2018.
Contested communications environments were simulated by disconnecting radios during some of the flight tests. The objective was to observe the performance of the subjects in such situations, and then reconnect them, Kallberg noted.
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