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US Army ops demo to shape next phase of modernised network

The US Army tests its Integrated Tactical Network during a demonstration featuring more than 200 Stryker combat vehicles. (US Army)

The US Army evaluated its Integrated Tactical Network (ITN) for the first time in a mounted configuration from 19 January to 5 February, Program Executive Office Command, Control, Communications-Tactical (PEO C3T) officials told Janes on 15 February.

The three-week event at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, was the “most significant evaluation of our capability set to date”, said Lisa Bell, programme officer for Command Post Integrated Infrastructure. The army is to deliver an operational assessment report for the demonstration in 90 days that will help inform the preliminary design review process for the next steps in upgrading the tactical network, she said.

More than 200 Stryker combat vehicles were used in the exercise, and soldiers conducted electronic jamming and sensing activities that had never been tested as part of the ITN before. The ITN is the army's effort to upgrade its legacy command, control, and communications (C3) platforms such as tactical radios, and build more robust networks for data transfer and decision making.

The main thrust of the exercise was to see how well soldiers could transition from vehicle to on-foot and back again while staying connected to the ITN, an objective of the ITN's Capability Set 23 (CS23), Bell said. The capability set process is designed by the army to iterate on the capabilities fielded for the network every two years.

During this exercise, the squadron and regimental headquarters were outfitted with communications devices that were mounted on platforms rather than just soldier-based systems.

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