US Military to Live-Test Joint Battle Management Prototype This Year

The US military will live-test an initial iteration of the combined command and control system that connects all military branches into a unified network.

The US Navy’s Valiant Shield exercise later this year will see the Joint Fires Network being tested, providing key insights for an operational model of the Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control (CJADC2), US Indo-Pacific Command Adm. John Aquilino revealed during Senate Armed Services Committee testimony last week.

“I’m going to produce a prototype – if you will – that will be demonstrated in our next big exercise this year to see where we are, what we’re doing, is it right, is it at scale,” USNI News quoted Aquilino as saying.  

Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control

The CJADC2 is a Pentagon initiative to move away from the services’ individual command and control networks.

It seeks to connect the US military’s multiple branches into a unified data-sharing network, providing information and decision-making advantages to joint force commanders across all warfighting domains.

“Geographically dispersed commanders will share a common understanding of the battlespace simultaneously, fed by platform sensors that can provide targeting guidance to key weapons systems,” Defense Scoop quoted the Pentagon’s fiscal 2025 budget documents as stating. 

“Coupled with the lethality of current and future munitions, joint force commanders will use JFN to underpin conventional deterrence and achieve decision advantage for combat success.”

Leverages US Military Programs

The initial version comes with “minimum viable capability combining software applications, data integration and cross-domain operational concepts designed to give commander’s critical decision advantage.” 

Moreover, it seeks to incorporate the best aspects of multiple US military command and control projects, such as the US Army’s Project Convergence and the US Navy’s Project Overmatch.

“So the approach we’ve taken with the joint fires network is to pull together a best-of-breed approach of Project Convergence from the Army, Overmatch from the Navy and Marine Corps, and then [Advanced Battle Management System] from the Air Force, along with the DARPA aspect of Assault Breaker II – to pull all those together, and deliver a real, near time best of breed solution to be able to command and control the joint force and ultimately close the kill chain,” USNI News quoted Aquilino as saying.

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