Northrop Grumman Corporation has successfully demonstrated a data link for connecting aircraft in highly contested airspace for long-range command and control through an open architecture network.
The experiment marked a milestone in the evolution of a distributed multi-domain battle management command and control architecture that maintains decision superiority for the US military and allies.
Northrop Grumman technologies, built on advanced low size, weight and power electronics, enable integrated and secure communications across domains supporting the Department of Defense’s JADC2 strategy, according to Tom Pieronek, chief technology officer and vice president, research and technology, Northrop Grumman.
“Northrop Grumman remains committed to delivering capabilities that maintain strategic advantage for the US and its allies across all domains and against all adversaries,” Pieronek added.
The flight demonstration is designed to be the first integration of a new mission-specific military transceiver, multi-level security data switches, and open architecture wide-area networking, utilising commercial technology into the observe, orient, decide and act loop – the decision-making chain for threat engagements.
The flight demonstration linked the Scaled Composites Proteus, a high-altitude, long-endurance research aircraft, with a Firebird, an unmanned air vehicle with the capability to be flown manned, through an advanced line-of-sight data link with low probability of intercept/low probability of detection characteristics that includes anti-jam properties.
The aircraft established a link, performed a simulated ISR mission, and connected back to a cloud-based 5G network testbed through a novel prototype multi-level security switch.
Northrop Grumman’s advanced battle management technologies are designed to help warfighters and branches of the military easily communicate and securely share mission critical data across air, land, sea and space to speed up decision timelines and maintain a strategic advantage in an age of data-driven conflict.
The company has recognised this development as a key step toward harnessing the power of a network into critical domains for national security missions.
Journalist – Defence and Security, Momentum Media
Nastasha is a Journalist at Momentum Media, she reports extensively across veterans issues, cyber security and geopolitics in the Indo-Pacific. Previously, she was a Content Producer at Verizon Media, a Digital Producer for Yahoo! 7 and Channel 7, a Digital Journalist at Sky News Australia, as well as a Website Manager and Digital Producer at SBS Australia. She started her career in media as a Video Producer and Digital News Presenter at News Corp Australia.