To support the brigade level and above,
these services rely on dedicated trunks for broadband connectivity.
Such radios offer wireless connectivity at rates from 1 MB to 16MB.
Where transfer of images or video is required, higher data rates
become imperative, links are being implemented with modern high
speed digital networks. These services are provided by modern
commercial networking systems, derived from commercial Wireless
Local Area Networks (WLAN), cellular networks or broadband satellite
links. Advanced, secured SDH connections provide an ultra-wideband
channel for up to 155mb. Such broadband satellite links and
fiber-optics are widely used to link stationary or fixed command
posts with terrestrial networks, but high-speed connectivity of
mobile elements is still restricted.
Current high capacity data networks rely on a framework of
terrestrial stationary nodes which are deployed at elevated
positions throughout the battlefield, to maintaining optimal
coverage over the entire theater. Unlike comparable commercial
cellular systems, these networks do not support mobile users.
Parallel to the rapid development of cellular networks and
commercial 3G internet connectivity during the 1990s, the US
military is promoting the research of military applications of such
systems, in programs such as GloMo and Mobile Ad-hoc Network (MANET),
resulting in demonstrated capability of voice/data services up to
few mb to dismounted users, and 10 – 100mbps for vehicular/airborne
To enable the "mobile battlefield Network", DARPA is developing the
Multifunctional On-the-Move Secure Adaptive Integrated
This "ad-hoc network" can automatically adapt to topography
and interference, maintaining optimal Quality of Service (QOS) of
data messages. MOSAIC can also be linked to terrestrial and SATCOM
networks for global connectivity. MOSAIC and similar systems promise
to revolutionize future tactical communications, but as they rely on
wireless access, and use of internet like protocols, they have
similar vulnerabilities of enterprise-class systems. The most severe
cyber threat is expected to be worms with arbitrary payload that can
infect and saturate entire MANET-based networks in seconds. A
significant part of the development of MANET and MOSAIC is focusing
on securing and protecting the network, and introduce self healing
and recovery of its elements under attack.
Other commercial technologies are utilized to establish satellite
communications on-the-move. Stabilized SATCOM antennas are used for
commercial TV and data communications on the move, for aircraft,
trains and private use are being adopted by military users for
tactical on the move applications. Utilizing ruggedized or military
grade systems, mobile SATCOM terminals are deployed on tanks or APCs
serving as mobile command posts, reconnaissance teams, missile and
artillery units, etc.