PEO C3T Program Review & Vision Guide

Introduction

Introduction from the Program Executive Officer

Introduction from the Program Executive Officer, Command, Control and Communications-Tactical: BG N. Lee S. Price

Having been selected to lead the Army’s Program Executive Office, Command, Control and Communications-Tactical (PEO C3T) is quite simply a rare and wonderful challenge.  As a leader, how do you channel the creativity and excellence of an organization that has so consistently demonstrated a marvelous capacity to maintain a focus on developing the technologies that matter for the warfighter?

PEO C3T is an organization that was established at the dawn of the Army’s digitization campaign plan to be the systems engineers for Army digitization. At the time, there were many doubts about this technology’s viability. Yet, in the midst of the challenge of turning this vision into reality, a new reality-transnational terror organizations-involved the nation in military campaigns that bore extremely high stakes for our nation and for the American warfighter.

However, where other organizations may have backed into the stable certainty of what’s tried and true, PEO C3T had the confidence and knowledge of these new capabilities to transition Army Battle Command Systems from a system just for experimental units into an Army wide solution for battle command that ensured synergistic operations. It brought Force XXI Battle Command Brigade-and-Below/Blue Force Tracker (FBCB2/BFT) into the fold in just months, making a significant difference for units in Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).

The way these units demanded these capabilities demonstrated that there might have been more and not less military value for these once visionary capabilities. Yet, with these capabilities in demand, this organization leaned forward to capitalize on the knowledge it had acquired to push the envelope further.

It is an organization that saw the limitations of a legacy system in OIF and turned out the Joint Network Node in nine months, and has since incorporated that system into a transition plan for battlefield networking for the Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (WIN-T) program.

It responded to the unanticipated challenge of incoming fire from insurgents into the Counter-Rocket Artillery and Mortar (C-RAM) capability along a similar timeline. It developed the Advanced Medium Mobile Power Sources (AMMPS) program that will make power generation on the battlefield more efficient and less fuel dependent, something that saves the lives of soldiers by reducing the amount of fuel in convoys.

When the Army’s future turned toward the concept of modularity, bringing with it new concepts for fighting, deploying and sustaining warfighting equipment, the Army’s new model for generating combat power-Army Force Generation (ARFORGEN), PEO C3T met this challenge. It did so not by waiting for guidance from Army headquarters, but by pioneering processes to support the concept that have since been incorporated by many other engineering units.

For example, the Unit Set Fielding (USF) process, which provides integrated solutions to deploying and preparing forces, ensured that units were deploying not just with the latest technologies, but were trained and equipped with the capabilities enhanced by technology to support their specific mission requirements.

The Single Interface to the Field (SIF) Portal, which provides improved and simplified reach-back support to warfighters and forward-support personnel through an Army Team C4ISR web portal and support center infrastructure for supported systems (whether in a test, exercise, or deployment/mobilization environment), gives soldiers easy access to subject matter experts who can provide them with whatever assistance they need around the clock. This is just another way that PEO C3T revolutionized how soldiers are supported.

The Technology Transition (T2) matrix and process presents descriptions of prioritized technology opportunities where project managers desire science and technology (S&T) to be inserted into their programs of record. This helps enable the S&T community to focus its projects and resources to areas of greatest impact. All of our stakeholders benefit from this by being able to view current technology opportunities and associated projects as part of the holistic big picture, which presents an opportunity to integrate solutions, eliminate redundancy, and identify areas for system-of-systems improvement.

What the PEO has accomplished demonstrates it is an organization of character. It is a technology organization, but it is also practical. It keeps itself centered not on the technology, but on the soldiers’ needs. It finds solutions. It has the confidence to not just envision the future, but to create it. It exhibits the finest qualities of the systems engineers in that it finds the elegant, simplest solution amidst a field of great complexity.

Here at PEO C3T, our mission is simple and focused: develop, field and support networked battle command solutions to enhance warfighter effectiveness. Additionally, our vision is clear: to remain the Army’s premier team providing proven, innovative, networked battle command solutions for the soldiers of today and tomorrow. The bottom line is that we are focused on keeping the warfighter our top priority and supplying them with what they need to win the fight.

The challenge is in leading an organization that has already demonstrated that its values are well placed, its competencies solid, its adaptability legendary and its technologies proven. The question is, ‘where does it go from here’?

As we move forward, PEO C3T will maintain its dedicated support to the current force, while digitizing the force of the future.

As we field a vast range of radios like the Single Channel Ground and Airborne Radio System (SINCGARS) to the fight, we will work to support the efforts of PEO Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) to bring new radio capabilities to the warfighter. Future increments of WIN-T will bring satellite communications on-the-move to the company level and increased bandwidth to the network.

Expected to field in October, the Joint Capabilities Release (JCR) of FBCB2-BFT will bring a singular command and control information solution to soldiers at the brigade level and below. JCR will feature modified software, a simplified database and the capability to deliver information over the air. The next increment, Joint Battle Command-Platform, will improve information sharing among the services and its coalition partners. Additionally, within the same platform, warfighters will have the ability to use either the terrestrial communications of the Enhanced Position Location Reporting System (EPLRS) or the celestial communications of BFT.

To increase the maneuver commander and staff’s ability to collaborate across a range of operations, PM Battle Command is consolidating fires, logistics, and airspace command and control functions into a common Command Post of the Future (CPOF) architecture.  

In fiscal year 2010, a phased approach will allow Tactical Airspace Integration System (TAIS, airspace management) users to access CPOF data. It will also let users of CPOF, Joint Automated Deep Operations Coordination System (JADOCS, joint fires planning and execution) and Battle Command Sustainment and support System (BCS3, logistics) to collaborate and receive air track feeds directly from TAIS.

In the fall, Project Manager, Mobile Electric Power (PM MEP), plans to evaluate prototype systems for its Hybrid Intelligent Power program at Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD. The program’s goal is to develop an intelligent power management system that is suitable for the battlefield to achieve additional fuel reductions and improve reliability of battlefield tactical power systems. PM MEP also continues to work with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Denver, CO, to evaluate solar power components and to develop a larger, solar-powered tactical electrical power system capable of producing up to 30kW of continuous power. Today, solar power is used mostly to charge batteries on the battlefield.

In closing, as we execute Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) in our transition to a new headquarters in Aberdeen Proving Ground, our support to missions across the globe will not waver. Whether support is required for a day-to-day mission or one that is forthcoming, we will continue to be a leader in providing command, control and communications capabilities to vast regions and terrains.