6
Realizing Naval Command and Information Infrastructure Capabilities

This chapter provides a high-level assessment of the ability of the Department of the Navy to realize the functional capabilities that the Naval Command and Information Infrastructure (NCII) must provide, as defined in Chapter 4. The chapter begins with a discussion of the baseline naval systems contributing to these functional capabilities (where baseline is taken to mean what is planned over the next few years). IT-21 is the Navy’s major strategy for realizing NCII-like capabilities, and so the baseline description presents an overview of IT-21 followed by more detail on certain aspects of it (e.g., communications, Global Command and Control System-Maritime). The chapter considers each of the functional capabilities,1 discussing where they are likely to be in the near term (next several years) and in the longer term. Based on that assessment, the committee’s findings and recommended approach to achieving the NCII functional capabilities are presented in the concluding section.

6.1 BASELINE NAVAL SYSTEMS

6.1.1 Introduction

The communications and information needs of the Navy and Marine Corps follow from the unique characteristics of and tasks assigned to warships and Marine units. The maritime environment and the requirement to operate with

1  

Information assurance, however, is treated separately in Chapter 5.



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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities 6 Realizing Naval Command and Information Infrastructure Capabilities This chapter provides a high-level assessment of the ability of the Department of the Navy to realize the functional capabilities that the Naval Command and Information Infrastructure (NCII) must provide, as defined in Chapter 4. The chapter begins with a discussion of the baseline naval systems contributing to these functional capabilities (where baseline is taken to mean what is planned over the next few years). IT-21 is the Navy’s major strategy for realizing NCII-like capabilities, and so the baseline description presents an overview of IT-21 followed by more detail on certain aspects of it (e.g., communications, Global Command and Control System-Maritime). The chapter considers each of the functional capabilities,1 discussing where they are likely to be in the near term (next several years) and in the longer term. Based on that assessment, the committee’s findings and recommended approach to achieving the NCII functional capabilities are presented in the concluding section. 6.1 BASELINE NAVAL SYSTEMS 6.1.1 Introduction The communications and information needs of the Navy and Marine Corps follow from the unique characteristics of and tasks assigned to warships and Marine units. The maritime environment and the requirement to operate with 1   Information assurance, however, is treated separately in Chapter 5.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Army, Air Force, and allied forces further shape the configuration and capacity demands of the naval services. Communications to and from ships are constrained by the limited space available for antennas and equipment and by the fact that such hardware is built in. As a consequence, ship communications suites are not readily reconfigurable to meet changing needs and, in general, a ship’s communications capability is largely fixed from the moment of deployment for wartime operations or routine peacetime presence missions. Additionally, antenna placement is a crucial factor because shielding by the superstructure, the motion of the ship induced by high seas, and even routine course changes can adversely affect communications connectivity. Amphibious ships pose a special case. These vessels of course have the communications and information needs characteristic of any warship. Additionally, the requirements of embarked Marine units, which are wholly dependent on host ships for planning and executing landing operations, must be reflected in the design of amphibious ship communications suites and information systems. For both routine peacetime deployments and combat, Marine Corps units are organized in Marine air-ground task forces (MAGTFs) in a form and in numbers that depend on the anticipated situation and mission. Once ashore, a MAGTF may be the sole ground element present or it may operate in concert with U.S. Army or coalition forces. During its movement from ship to shore and once established there, the MAGTF employs its own organic communications and information resources to link to Navy ships at sea and to neighboring land forces, if present. As time passes and dependence on immediate fire and logistics support from the sea diminishes, the MAGTF communications architecture takes on a form not unlike that of the Army, with ties to adjacent land force elements and higher-level commanders in theater. Just as a MAGTF organization is tailored for a particular mission, the communications and information systems to be employed are specially shaped as well. Subject to lift constraints on the weight and cubage that can be transported during an operation, the Marines can and do supplement standard allowances of communication equipment to meet the requirements of the tactical situation the MAGTF expects to encounter. In general, therefore, Marine units are not subject to the kind of built-in communications limits of Navy warships. However, the special needs generated by new tactical concepts, such as Operational Maneuver From the Sea (OMFTS) make reliable connectivity a very real challenge and clearly call for enhanced capabilities. Because of tightly coupled lift, communications, fire support, and logistics dependencies, it is hard to imagine the Navy and Marine Corps operating in a forward area in isolation from one another, although they may well operate independently of Army and Air Force units under some circumstances. Increasingly, however, naval forces must fit into a greater joint forces construct, and this, in turn, requires enhanced communications to assure connectivity with other

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities forces and the joint command structure and to profit from information collected by National and other Service intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance systems. What follows is a review of the status of the Navy’s IT-21 initiative, the new Navy/Marine Corps intranet, the communications and network posture of the Navy and Marine Corps, and the Global Command and Control System-Maritime, which is the key command and control tool for the naval forces. The committee focused on operations afloat and, for Marines, operations ashore in theater, in assessing the current status and adequacy of communications and information systems. While the committee recognized the essential support role played by Navy and Marine Corps commands in the United States, it decided to concentrate on the more challenging environment characterized by an absence of fiber-optic land lines and severe constraints on space for computers, servers, antennas, and communications equipment. 6.1.2 IT-21: The Navy’s Principal IT and C4I Thrust The Navy’s reliance on and investment in communications, particularly satellite communications (SATCOM), has increased dramatically in recent years owing in great measure to the need to exploit the benefits offered by long-range precision weapons and by information from a variety of ISR systems, all in support of new concepts such as network-centric warfare and OMFTS, as well as the need to operate effectively with joint forces. The positive impact of these investments was first felt in Navy shore command centers when improved intelligence and situational awareness as well as enhanced connectivity to national and theater commanders were introduced. Additionally, special efforts were made to enhance command, control, communications, and computing (C4) capabilities and the availability of ISR information aboard aircraft carriers and fleet flagships, the major afloat command nodes for naval forces. To realize the benefits offered by synergies between all ship types in a battle group or amphibious task force, it soon became evident that the communications and command and control (C2) capabilities of vessels other than nuclear-powered aircraft carriers (CVNs) and amphibious assault ships, general purpose and multipurpose (LHA/LHDs), would also have to be upgraded. And here the Navy was faced with the challenge of making hardware and software changes to a variety of ship types, each of which had an overhaul and maintenance schedule different from the schedules of other ships in the battle group with which it was to deploy. Only by solving this problem and deploying ships with matching capabilities could the battle group commander be assured of having ships with communications and information systems that permitted full exploitation of the potential of the naval weapon systems embarked. As a consequence, IT-21 was born in 1998 as a fleet-driven initiative to coordinate and accelerate the installation and testing of modern information tech-

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities nology (IT) and command, control, and communications (C3) systems already in the acquisition pipeline as well as the training of personnel to operate them. The goal is to ensure that capabilities are in place at deployment time to effect a bridge between ships afloat, space assets, and command centers ashore. Because of funding constraints, the initial focus was on ships at sea, and investments in shore infrastructure were limited to those necessary to support forces afloat and Marine operations ashore. The principal elements of IT-21 are as follows: Full SATCOM capability for all surface combatants; Major capacity enhancements to amphibious ship communications; Improved shipboard command and control capabilities such as GCCS-M and improved planning and decision tools; Enhanced support communications, processing, and storage; Robust shipboard local area networks; Modern personal computer workstations and commercial-based operating system; Matching capacity upgrades at shore communications hubs; and Measures to improve information assurance and security. It is important to note that this initiative is not a program in the sense of an acquisition but, rather, a strategy to install improved C4 hardware and software, most of it already being procured, in an orderly and controlled fashion. The goal here is to install enhancements such that all ships in a carrier battle group and amphibious task group will have compatible C3 capabilities upon deployment. The mechanism employed in IT-21 is essentially a spiral installation process whereby the configuration is fixed well in advance of the deployment date so that sufficient time is available to install, test, and train personnel to operate the new hardware and software elements. Recommendations derived from operating new systems during deployment are then integrated with assessments of the value and availability of new technologies and components from the acquisition pipeline. From this process emerges a configuration that is specified for installation in time for the next deployment of the battle group and, depending on its complexity, possibly earlier in groups deploying sooner. If a ship type is said to be IT-21-capable, this does not mean it has the same C4 capabilities as, say, an aircraft carrier. Rather a smaller IT-21-capable ship will have modern IT inserted and enough SATCOM capacity for it to apply its weapon system capabilities in support of the overall battle group mission. A prototype IT-21 suite was deployed in 1998 in the Abraham Lincoln battle group and was the basis for refining the concept and developing a standard installation. The first of these deployed in summer 1999, and the spiral upgrade and installation process will continue through 2002, at which time full IT-21 capability will have been realized for all ships. The spiral process could very

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities well continue after 2002. However, plans for the future are not determined at this point and probably will be keyed to the evolving Navy/Marine Corps intranet (N/ MCI) initiative discussed below. 6.1.3 Navy/Marine Corps Intranet At the time IT-21 was initiated, funding constraints precluded inclusion of the business side of the Navy and its shore support infrastructure in a comprehensive IT upgrade program. Nevertheless, the need to upgrade and integrate the several shore networks that have developed over the years was recognized. These networks include those built around regions or base areas, the Marine Corps enterprise network, and the Naval Air, Naval Sea, and Naval Supply Systems Commands (NAVAIR, NAVSEA, and NAVSUP) networks. All of these, and others, were developed independently; they do not interoperate well (or at all), they lack adequate security provisions, and in aggregate they are expensive to operate and maintain. The Navy/Marine Corps intranet (N/MCI) concept was thus developed to address the goal of having a federation of networks and computers that work as a single integrated system. The N/MCI concept has been approved by the Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV), the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), and the Commandant of the Marine Corps (CMC), resources for implementation are being identified, and design and procurement actions are under way. As stated in a recent briefing to industry, the N/MCI is the Department of the Navy enterprise-wide network capability that will provide end-to-end, secure, assured access to the full range of voice, video, and data services by year end 2001, as depicted in Figure 6.1. A coherent department-wide network is the goal, resulting in increased efficiencies and enhanced business and warfighting processes. The task of implementing the N/MCI is to be given to industry. Bidders for the integration and system operation contract have been informed that they are not bound by any preconceived architecture and are not required to use existing information system or technology infrastructure. The DOD architectural framework will be followed and the resultant network or system is to be defense information infrastructure/common operating environment (DII COE) compliant. The precise relationship of this initiative to IT-21 is not yet clear, but was to be elucidated before the contract bid package was issued in late 1999. 6.1.4 Communications and Networks Communications and networking services have evolved over the history of the Navy and Marine Corps as a critical component in the accomplishment of any and all assigned missions. This capability extends from the days of visual means (signal flags and lights) for communicating between and among various command elements, high-frequency circuits using Morse code, frequency shift key-

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities FIGURE 6.1 Naval and Marine Corps intranet conceptual view. ITSC, information technology service center. SOURCE: Fleet and Allied Requirements Division (N60), Office of the Chief of Naval Operations. 1999. “End-to-End Capability” in Information Technology for the 21st Century [IT-21 Generic Brief]. The Pentagon, Washington, D.C., June 18. Available online at <cno-n6.hq.navy.mil/n60/documents.html>.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities ing (FSK) and other modulations for long-haul communications, to more modern, high-capacity multimedia (voice, data, video) terrestrial-, satellite-, and airborne-relay and line-of-sight tactical connectivities. It is safe to say that virtually all usable regions of the physical frequency spectrum (acoustic, electromagnetic, and optical) have been and are continuing to be employed by naval forces for basic communications in all types of operational and physical propagation environments. These capabilities have been operated in combinations of network configurations, including point-to-point, broadcast, and multicast, using a wide range of protocols for access and use of the network. Because of the need for mobility, much of the naval communications infrastructure is provided by radio-frequency circuits and networks that operate over a wide portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, from extremely low frequencies (ELFs) at tens of hertz (Hz), to extremely high frequencies (EHFs) at tens of gigahertz (GHz). Radio frequency propagation characteristics, information bandwidth, and operational posture are the key parameters for selecting the frequency band of operation for a particular application. For example, communications to submarines use the lower frequency bands (ELF, VLF, and LF) to allow the signal to penetrate seawater or reach floating wire or towed buoy antennas at long distances (thousands of miles) when the platform is submerged. The information bandwidth at these frequencies permits only low data rates, however, generally from a few bits per minute to roughly 50 bits per second (bps). Operation in the high-frequency band allows increased data rates (up to several kilobits per second) at beyond line-of-sight distances using both ionospheric and ground wave propagation modes. One must move to the ultrahigh-frequency (UHF), superhigh-frequency (SHF), and EHF bands to realize high information throughput (tens to thousands of kbps). In doing so, however, the operator must be willing to deal with line-of-sight distances (requiring relays for long distance connectivity), point and tracking systems because of the narrow antenna beam widths, and various deleterious effects from atmospheric attenuation due to water vapor and scintillation. The myriad communications paths linking ship to shore, ship to ship, and one Marine unit to another carry a variety of information (Figure 6.2). This includes urgent command orders, critical intelligence, tracking data on friendly and enemy forces, information drawn from data repositories remote from the requesting ship, routine peacetime “business” communications, urgent requests for spare parts, and also quality-of-life items (e.g., personal phone calls and e-mail). It is, however, the increasing call for and availability of synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) imagery collected by airborne and space sensors that is a principal driver in determining shipboard communications capacity and equipment needs. On the other hand, moving-target indicator (MTI) and signal intelligence (SIGINT) data from platforms such as the Joint Surveillance and Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS), the U-2, and Rivet

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities FIGURE 6.2 Communications paths and connectivity today. Courtesy of the Director of the Space, Information Warfare, Command and Control Directorate (N6), Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington, D.C., March, 1999.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities FIGURE 6.3 Communications bandwidth trends. CSS, combat support systems; TAV, total asset visibility; VTC, video teleconference. SOURCE: Defense Science Board. 2000. Modified from Figure 3.2, “Findings: DoD Requirements; DSB Assessment,” in Report of the Defense Science Board on Tactical Battlefield Communications, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Technology, Washington, D.C., February, p. 53.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Joint require comparatively little bandwidth even though they need special data links and surface terminals. Figure 6.3 shows this trend in bandwidth, brought on, in great measure, by the need for imagery. Figure 6.4 depicts many of the networks and communication paths to, from, and between ships at sea, their transport capacities, and the services that travel over them. Of particular note is the significant overall increase in SATCOM capability compared to the limited UHF SATCOM bandwidth available during Desert Storm, as well as the increasing use of commercial satellites. Not shown are line-of-sight UHF/VHF circuits, tactical data links, and special links with airborne imagery platforms. Also not indicated is HF radio, which continues to play an important communications role, today carrying some 10 percent of all traffic, including supplying essential connectivity to allied forces. The communications configurations of individual ship categories are shown in Table 6.1. Capabilities being installed incident to the IT-21 initiative vary between ship types and are dependent on mission needs. Not shown are certain mine warfare vessels and MSC-operated logistics support ships; however, these are being equipped appropriately as well. Of particular note are the special data links that, if installed and matched with appropriate terminals and exploitation segments, can provide real time, direct imagery feeds, along with SIGINT and MTI data, to ships so equipped. Turning to the Marine Corps, a MAGTF commander is able to communicate with ships and between his units using UHF/VHF line-of-sight and HF radios during the early phases of a classic amphibious operation. But because of the fluid nature of such operations, establishing and maintaining communications between units has always been challenging. Now, two new factors have added to the difficulty: (1) the need for imagery feeds and products that demand much higher frequencies and greater bandwidth and (2) implementation of the OMFTS concept, which calls for over-the-horizon operations by dispersed units, at least during the early phases of a campaign, as shown in Figure 6.5. As a consequence, forward small units will require SATCOM and airborne communications relay resources, items that have not heretofore been included in a standard equipment list. Table 6.2 shows the networks applicable to selected MAGTF units moving to or operating ashore, along with the equipment considered standard for a given level of command. As noted above, however, communications suites for MAGTF units can be, and usually are, tailored for the particular tactical situation. Capabilities can be added, subject to the availability of transport to lift the equipment into the objective area. 6.1.5 Global Command and Control System-Maritime Global Command and Control System-Maritime (GCCS-M) is the principal Navy command and control tool for commanders and ship commanding officers.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities FIGURE 6.4 Satellite communications services and systems. Acronyms are defined in Appendix H. SOURCE: CNO N6 PRO1 Baseline Assessment Memorandum (Draft), December 17, 1999.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Location of units. This knowledge is useful when maintaining network equipment and for use by attached devices that do not carry such information themselves; and System offerings. A catalogue of presentation and network transport equipment and systems indexed by particular information needs helps define the system architecture. An important guideline for designing such a system is that there is an iterative relationship between the operational and system architectures. The “intelligence” of such a system is an ability to recall previous iterations and solutions for a given mission and to stipulate by means of previously defined templates that may in part be rule-based, the following: All previously used information flows and their corresponding equipment; Equipment required for a specific information need; Needs not satisfied by equipment in the inventory, indigenous or leased; and Unit or platform locations not covered by elements in the system inventory. This type of tool should fit easily under a DARPA program now under way called Active Templates. The program, which has interface shells that permit the building or use of templates in the context of interactive planning, allows the incorporation and use of recent experience and can employ automatic reasoning, including temporal. While the program is not yet addressing the building of an operational architecture, such a task seems well suited for the technical methods now under way. 6.2.8 Execution Management The functional capabilities discussed in the preceding sections provide support for making command decisions. Once those decisions have been made, they must be conveyed to the appropriate operating elements and, in the face of rapidly changing events, modified if necessary. That is the purpose of the execution management function. One might argue that the preceding functions are all that is needed to convey and modify decisions. In a sense that is true, but the need for rapid adaptation is so central to network-centric operations that it would be best to explicitly identify a function that supports the rapid direction and redirection of force elements. Four capabilities seem particularly necessary for execution management: Rapid, guaranteed delivery of command orders;

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Effective promulgation of commander’s intent; Rapid feedback of battle effects (e.g., battle damage assessment (BDA)); and Rapid planning for force redirection. In considering these capabilities, one should not think only in terms of a strictly hierarchical command model. That is, the initial orders could come from a senior echelon, but the rapid adaptation could involve decisions made only among the lower echelons. 6.2.8.1 Near-term Assessment The delivery of command orders has long been a matter of high priority. While new means to improve communications are always being sought, especially in the face of limited bandwidth and jamming, effective means for communicating command orders have in fact been developed. The advances discussed earlier in communications and networking, information assurance, and system resource management should lead to further capabilities in this area. The main method today of assuring that a commander’s intentions are absorbed and executed by the available forces is the pre-mission command briefing, relayed down the chain of command until all members of the force are able to act in unison. These briefings convey the mission objectives, the enemy situation, distribution of responsibility across the participants, and the timing of the operation. Most of today’s command briefings are based on two-dimensional map symbolism and the plan of execution is expected to hold until a new, similar briefing can be held. The question is whether more elaborate means are necessary to convey the commander’s intent (as distinct from some of the more detailed aspects of the battle plan). The MCCDC has examined this issue, and its thinking is that more elaborate means are not necessary. Rather, what is required is that the purpose of the operation, as distinct from the specifics of movement or attack, be clearly stated. That way when there are failed assumptions or changing circumstances in the course of a battle, the forces have a rationale for how to adapt. Learning to convey purpose is largely a matter of officer training. Dedicated narrowband voice channels enable rapid feedback of the most salient points about battle progress. More detailed feedback would come through such means as the CTP. As discussed above, while progress has been made in establishing CTPs, matters such as latency and consistency still need attention. Activities such as the Extended Littoral Battlespace ACTD are examining procedural and technical means for the real-time distribution of friendly and enemy force situation data. Another factor is BDA. Even if damage information is rapidly conveyed back to force planners, it is necessary to rapidly assess the effects of this damage in order to decide if forces can be directed elsewhere because of target destruction, or if additional forces must be applied to the origi-

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities nal target. BDA is a difficult task, and means to carry it out much more rapidly are needed. Traditional planning, for example, in assigning strike aircraft to their targets, is based on an air tasking order (ATO) prepared daily. Efforts to reduce ATO planning cycle time are under way and consideration is also being given to directing or redirecting aircraft in flight, based on recently gained information (e.g., the effectiveness of other sorties and the movement of enemy forces). One example of a planning system for such rapid redirection is the Real Time Targeting and Retargeting (RTR) program being carried out at SPAWAR. Other aspects of rapid force direction or redirection, to include the case of land forces, are being explored in the Navy fleet battle experiments and the Marine Corps Sea Dragon experiments. In summary, effective realization of execution management is, in some important ways, dependent on those functional capabilities discussed in previous sections. Some new items raised in the above discussion require continuing attention: clear statement of purpose in the commander’s intent (which may be largely a matter of training), faster BDA, and planning processes and tools that allow the rapid direction and redirection of forces. The planning capabilities are a matter of procedure as well as technology, so continued experimentation is critical to improvements in this area. 6.2.8.2 Future Capabilities Ideally, the intent is to develop an integrated sensing, planning, and execution system that functions continuously, giving commanders timely situational reports and suggested options. Desirable features include tools that could be keyed by an operational plan to perform continuous assessments, that could enforce tightly synchronized action, and that could replan instantly as friendly or enemy assessments changed. Efforts to integrate sensor information are ongoing and are reflected in the discussion of functional capabilities in the previous sections. Efforts at rapid planning and replanning have begun with such activities as the SPAWAR RTR program, noted above, and the Joint Forces Air Component Commander (JFACC) program at DARPA. However, automatically generating battle options for typical situations is a difficult task and is likely to remain unrealized in the foreseeable future. 6.3 RECOMMENDATIONS The committee’s findings and recommendations, based on the foregoing discussion and assessment of progress toward realizing the functional capabilities needed in a common command and information infrastructure for the naval forces, are presented and discussed here.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Finding: The Department of the Navy has valuable ongoing initiatives (e.g., IT-21, GCCS-M) contributing to the functional capabilities necessary for an NCII. However, the ongoing developments do not provide a comprehensive approach to realizing the set of capabilities necessary for a common information infrastructure. IT-21, for example, is improving long-haul communications to all ships, and GCCS-M (including the COE) is also providing necessary functional capabilities (e.g., for information dissemination management and information presentation). The value of these enhancements is very significant in facilitating and improving the treatment of information in naval operations. But as can be seen from the numerous shortfalls discussed in the functional capabilities assessment, the capabilities are not being fully addressed. Furthermore, and perhaps more importantly, IT-21 and GCCS-M/COE do not offer a systematic framework for filling out the full set of functional capabilities. IT-21 focuses mostly on end-to-end connectivity (roughly the “lower layer” or supporting resource base as shown in Figure 4.2 in Chapter 4), which is of course very important, but it does not recognize that a broader assemblage of functional capabilities is necessary. Likewise, GCCS-M/COE does not offer a systematic framework.19 The committee’s set of findings and recommendations drawn from its assessment of all the functional capabilities is given below. As is clearly seen, the set of recommended actions is large and, taken together, they make the point that much further technical advancement is required to realize the full range of functional capabilities required for the NCII. 6.3.1 Findings and Recommendations for Functional Capability Areas 6.3.1.1 Communications and Networking—General Finding: Significantly increased in-theater SATCOM capacity is planned, but the Department of the Navy’s stated SATCOM capacity requirements could be unrealistically low, especially considering increasing imagery demands. In addition, no comprehensive statement of requirements for direct communication links from in-theater sensors (e.g., U-2, JSTARS, UAVs) to ships could be found by the committee. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should conduct a comprehensive analysis of communication capacity requirements and projected availability, and identify remedial actions if significant shortfalls exist. The analysis should include long-haul communications and tactical data links, including direct links from in-theater sensors. 19   The COE effort has described as a layered software architecture, but that is different than a systematic presentation of the functional capabilities (which largely correspond to the common support applications in COE terms).

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Finding: Communications interoperability is increasing with the forces of other Services and joint elements but is still very limited with allied and coalition forces. Recommendation: The Department of the Defense should explore with allies the means for improved communications interoperability, in particular those based on common commercial technologies. Finding: Rapidly advancing and potentially revolutionary commercial satellite communications developments (e.g., wideband LEO satellites) are anticipated. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should make maximum feasible use of emerging commercial satellite communications infrastructure and technology. 6.3.1.2 Communications and Networking—Wireless 6.3.1.2.1 Waveform Interoperability Finding: Programmable modular radios are achievable for most communications waveforms. The technical problems in handling the JTIDS waveform in a modular radio can be overcome with a relatively modest investment. Any perceived competition with the MIDS program can be defused by pointing out that modular radios are considered just another way of implementing a JTIDS radio. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should give preference to modular radio programs whose individual modules can switch dynamically among multiple waveforms. All modular radio programs should include modules capable of processing the JTIDS waveform. Finding: To take full advantage of the potential value of programmable modular radios, an experimental program is needed to explore how this new capability can best be used. Recommendation: Using joint combat information terminals, the Marines should experiment with simultaneous interoperation with the Navy, Army ground units, and Army airborne units. Finding: A strategy is needed to ensure future compatibility and to prevent developers from introducing new waveforms that transfer costs to the information infrastructure.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Recommendation: Acquisition agencies contemplating the introduction or further purchase of radios whose waveforms are not emulated by existing programmable modular radios should be required, absent rarely granted waivers, to develop the PMR software that permits the emulation of these waveforms. 6.3.1.2.2 Antennas Finding: The Department of the Navy is correct in continuing to give priority to the search for multifrequency, self-stabilizing, multibeam, electronically steerable shipboard and aircraft antennas. However, developmental antenna systems may not be affordable unless requirements are tailored or a breakthrough technology appears. Recommendation: While continuing to push available technology in programs like the Advanced Multifunction Radio Frequency System, the Department of the Navy should also seek to validate potential breakthrough technologies and should attempt to adapt its transport architectures to the use of future low-cost electronically steered antennas developed for commercial applications. Finding: The submarine will always be at a disadvantage in terms of maximum communications rate unless its antenna aperture can be made comparable to that of a surface ship, but that would be a very expensive undertaking. Two-way communication to a submerged submarine would be possible through the use of towed buoys or an acoustically linked autonomous vehicle. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should perform system engineering to quantify the effect of an improved communications rate, for both periscope depth and deeply submerged submarines, on the effectiveness of the entire network in relation to the cost involved. Based on those results, the Department of the Navy should invest as appropriate in improved submarine antennas. Finding: The committee found no Department of the Navy program dedicated to developing architecture and apparatus to permit dismounted troops to interoperate well with other component systems, although multiple technology and position location identification (PLI) programs exist. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should obtain agreement between MCCDC and TRADOC on the characteristics of terminals for dismounted troops and on an architecture that will permit interoperability in communications and PLI, experiment with hub-and-spoke implementations of this architecture, and procure appropriate terminal equipment jointly.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities 6.3.1.3 System Resource Management Finding: Existing means for system resource management will be significantly enhanced by the quality of service (QOS) features available in the most recent and emerging internet protocols (e.g., IPv6, RSVP). DARPA programs (e.g., Quorum) are also promising significant QOS advances in the near future. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should track and apply advances in QOS-related commercial technologies, and work with the developers of emerging standards to address military needs. The Department of the Navy should apply DARPA advances in system resource management technology (broadening what is now being done with Quorum and the DD-21). Finding: Knowing the attributes of the end devices connected to a network will provide useful status information on those devices (including authentication) and allow information feeds to them to be tailored to their capabilities. Very little end-device information is made available now. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should promote research to define and make feasible the disclosure of end-device attributes to authorized network entities. 6.3.1.4 Collection Management Finding: Collection management systems are now largely associated with individual sensor systems and associated tasking often involves a hierarchical, manual process. This results in lack of timeliness, integrated collection planning, and cross-cueing, which could be exacerbated as assets for collecting data increase in the future. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should support both planned evolutionary advances (e.g., NIMA tasking, processing, exploitation, and dissemination baseline/modernization plan) and potential revolutionary advances (e.g., DARPA Advanced ISR Management program) for data collection management. 6.3.1.5 Information Exploitation Finding: The common operational and tactical pictures are primary means for representing the battlespace situation. Automated extraction of individual targets is accomplished, but much manual intervention is required to build a consistent representation of the overall battlespace in the COP and CTP.

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities Recommendation: In COP and CTP development, the Department of the Navy should apply more systematic techniques for the definition, capture, and use of context (metadata) for individual target data, to facilitate establishing consistent overall battlespace representations. 6.3.1.6 Information Request and Dissemination Management Finding: Significantly increased ability for users to locate and transparently access information is promised by the information dissemination management (IDM) capabilities currently being deployed. Realization of a wide-scale IDM capability requires a more complete set of IDM services and, in particular, agreement across the producer community (defense and intelligence) on metadata standards for information products. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should work with the USJFCOM requirements developer and the USAF executive agent for the next-generation IDM program to achieve a widespread IDM capability. Agreement on metadata standards across the whole producer community could require concerted efforts at senior levels of DOD and the intelligence community. Finding: While IDM could offer very widespread information search capability, not all information can be assumed to be “plugged into” its standard information products base, so complementary search capabilities are also needed. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should explore the use of software agent technology (e.g., in the DARPA CoABS program) as a means to provide users a rapid and transparent information search capability, and should incorporate it in more formal development programs as the technology matures. 6.3.1.7 Information Presentation and Decision Support Finding: The COP and CTP represent important advances in combining information from many sources, but there is no overall concept for what information is required and how it should be displayed. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should continue to refine the development of information presentation through experiments. Warfighter input should drive information presentation development. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should develop a computer-aided tool to aid in the construction of operational architectures. In helping to elaborate information flows and needs, this tool will have broad utility, including

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities COP and CTP construction. A key aspect requiring research is the ability to specify the information flows and needs at intermediate levels of abstraction. Finding: Near-term COP and CTP development is based on the use of tradition two-dimensional map-based displays. While such representations are certainly useful, they are limited in their ability to convey information. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should continue and expand participation in visualization research efforts (e.g., the DARPA CPoF program) and, as the technology matures, incorporate it in more formal development programs. Finding: Conferencing, to include video teleconferencing, has proven valuable to naval forces in planning, exchanging information, and decision making. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should explore and incorporate as feasible the advances in conferencing capability (e.g., immersive, virtual roundtables) expected to be available through commercial technology in the next several years. 6.3.1.8 Execution Management Finding: Conveying the commander’s intent is central to execution management, and a clear statement of an operation’s purpose is essential to expressing the intent. Recommendation: The Department of the Navy, through training and experiments, should ensure that purpose is always clearly conveyed in statements of the commander’s intent. Finding: Execution management, especially at the increasingly fast pace anticipated for operations, requires the ability to dynamically assign or reassign targets to forces (e.g., in aircraft strike missions). Recommendation: The Department of the Navy should continue to pursue further development of planning processes and tools (e.g., the SPAWAR RTR tool) to allow rapid direction and redirection of forces and should continue refining the use and development of these processes and tools in military experiments. 6.3.2 General Cross-cutting Recommendations Each recommendation above is worthy of consideration; however, since the assessment for each functional capability area is already given in the chapter,

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities these individual findings and recommendations are not discussed further here. Rather, the focus is on a general recommendation that builds on observations that cut across the assessments and will aid in realization of the individual recommendations. Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy, the CNO, and the CMC should develop a comprehensive and balanced transition plan to aid realization of the functional capabilities necessary for the NCII. Individual elements with which to begin building this plan are given in the individual recommendations above. General principles for use in developing the plan include the following: Achieve balance within and across all the functional capability areas. Improvements should be made in proportion to the extent of the shortfalls noted in each area, the relative importance of each area, and the feasibility of making progress in that area. Furthermore, to ensure that a balanced approach is being taken to needs for a given functional capability, a general structure of the following sort might be considered. Associated with each functional area are both an operational process that must be carried out and technology (i.e., a hardware/ software) to support it. Furthermore, each function supports the warfighter, who will need direct access to it (recall the discussion of Section 4.1.2 in Chapter 4). Likewise, each function must also have certain capabilities in it to support the technical specialists who ensure its operations. Thus, there is a “2 × 2 matrix” (process, technology) × (warfighter, technical operator), and for each of the four elements of the matrix there should be a specified set of needs. Balanced planning for a given functional capability means that all these needs are defined and addressed. Participate with the other Services, defense agencies, and the joint and intelligence communities in developing the functional capabilities. Many of the functional capabilities are not under the direct control of the Department of the Navy, as would occur in a traditional program management situation. For example, SATCOM assets are shared, collection management occurs partly in the intelligence community, and next-generation information dissemination management is being developed by a USAF executive agent and will most likely be maintained by DISA. The naval services must track and encourage such developments, and ensure that naval needs are being addressed in them, providing funding where necessary to make that happen. While staff-level working groups are important in this process, naval involvement cannot stop there. Senior-level naval officials must be aware of progress in cross-community activities and, where necessary, step in to facilitate them and to ensure that naval needs are being met. Take full advantage of research products. For example, DARPA has (or has had) programs relating to every functional capability, and ONR/NRL has important programs in communications and networking and information

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Network-Centric Naval Forces: A Transition Strategy for Enhancing Operational Capabilities assurance. Such research offers the potential for significant advancement. Interaction with these research programs is a “two-way street”—both absorbing the technology and also influencing its direction. While there is some naval involvement in such programs, the committee observed a reluctance on the part of naval program managers. Incorporating research products into acquisition programs requires that the research products be matured (“hardened”). The naval services would have to allocate funds for this, which are perhaps best kept separate from the acquisition programs so they will not be absorbed for other purposes. Furthermore, explicit efforts to assess research programs to identify “low-hanging fruit” should be carried out.20 Utilize commercial technology as much as possible. The rapid advances in commercial communications and computing technology and their potential for reducing costs in military developments have been widely discussed. The individual findings and recommendations for the functional capabilities presented in Sections 6.3.1 and 6.3.2 noted the use of commercial technology several times. And even in cases where it is not explicitly noted, an examination of the functional capability shows wide use of commercial components in the makeup of the overall capability. Development of functional capabilities should give first priority to use of commercial technology, although it is recognized that there are situations where it is not able to meet the needs. 20   Some activities of this sort do occur under the Chief of Naval Research, and the recently established Chief Technology Officer under the ASN (Research, Development, and Acquisition) could also be involved.