Skip to Main Content
The Boeing/SAIC lead system integrator (LSI) team is designing a networked communications capability for the US Army/DARPA future combat system (FCS). This paper will discuss the results of a scalable mobile network (SMN) demonstration conducted in first quarter 2003 at Fort Dix and Lakehurst Naval Air Engineering Station in New Jersey. The scalable mobile network demonstration was designed to address three of the most challenging aspects of the FCS network communications architecture; Scalability of the network architecture to provide connectivity to the full FCS unit of action (UA), quality-of-service (QoS) in a heterogeneous network environment, and communications robustness in a mobile ad-hoc network. The demonstration was designed to show, in an operationally significant scenario, the technologies required to realize these capabilities. The demonstration consisted of a Brigade slice of an PCs combined arms battalion conducting a raid in a military operations in urban terrain (MOUT) scenario. This operation fielded a total of 63 nodes (42 vehicles, 18 dismounted soldiers and 3 air platforms) hosting 78 radios organized into 9 unique radio networks. Specific nodes were configured to be gateway nodes between networks by incorporating a router function within the platform. The demonstration utilized both new and legacy radios including radios from DARPA's FCS-communications and small unit operation-situational awareness system (SUO-SAS) programs, VRC-99 radios along with wideband JTRS radios (WJRs) and radio network access units (R-NA Us) from the Army's MOSAIC program. The Boeing/SAIC LSI team integrated these diverse radios into a heterogeneous network to demonstrate key technologies used in on-the-move tactical communications for the FCS force. The radios/routers were configured to emulate the functionality of the JTRS radio that will be the backbone radio for PCS. Field results for the scalable mobile network demonstration are discussed in the paper.