For many years, land forces lagged behind
air forces and navies in the implementation of computerized command,
control, communications (C4) technologies. Complex operating
environment, standardization issues, limited mobility and lack of
adequate data transfer capability, primarily at the tactical,
narrow-band communications level, kept land forces away from using
tactical integrated C4 systems, while systems deployed at higher
echelons suffered from excessive latency, due to insufficient
reporting from the field units.
Today's land forces transformation is driven by a significantly better
communications, more affordable, ruggedized and reliable computers,
and advanced applications that are becoming an indispensable tool for
leaders at all levels of command.
Military communications benefit from the
rapid growth of commercial communications and merging of mobile
communications and IP (Internet Protocol) technology. Information, now
accessible everywhere through wireless protocols, is becoming part of
the military Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) based communications
infrastructure. These include cellular 3G wireless communications
applications, adapted to military use and the modification of
and TETRAPOL based communications systems, to provide thousands of
military users with end-to-end secured communications, integration of
Wi-Fi wireless local area networking and
WiMAX to replace wire-line
communications, connecting elements between and within command posts.
Commercial standards are also used in
discrete applications, including datalinks, which previously relied on
proprietary technologies. One example is the Coded Orthogonal
Frequency Division Multiplexing (COFDM) technology, originally
developed for digital TV and cable broadcasting, now used to support
military applications requiring multiple live video feeds.
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