The Department of the Army's Product Manager for Installation Information Infrastructure Modernization Program (PdM-I3MP) completed a network modernization project at Military Ocean Terminal Sunny Point near Brunswick County, North Carolina during the third quarter of 2018.
One of the largest military terminals in the world, Sunny Point provides a transfer point between rail, trucks, and ships for the import and export of weapons, ammunition, explosives and military equipment for the U.S. Army. As the country's largest ammunition port, roughly 85 percent of the ammunition used in U.S. combat operations passes through Sunny Point.
This project is in the portfolio of Colonel Enrique Costas, who serves as the Project Manager for Defense Communications and Army Transmission Systems (PM DCATS) and manages the strategic satellite and terrestrial communications programs that support the Army, Joint Services, National Command Authority and combatant commanders. Colonel Costas says, "PdM-I3MP is modernizing the Army networks to enable the current fight and to prepare for the next fight. At Military Ocean Terminal Sunny Point, improved network infrastructure enables the necessary high-capacity data throughput to support the immense quantity of munitions passing through Sunny Point for our Soldiers operating across the globe."
At Sunny Point, PdM-I3MP upgraded the Installation Campus Area Network (ICAN) Ethernet switches as part of an Army-wide effort with the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA). The Army and DISA partnered on the network modernization initiative to enable Army installations to leverage DISA enterprise services, improving the foundational ICAN elements and providing the mission-critical capability required by the Warfighter.
Kevin Chinn, the acting PdM-I3MP deputy product manager, says, "Readiness remains the Army's priority one. The Sunny Point projects supported Army readiness by modernizing, streamlining, standardizing, and hardening the Army network. These projects ensure that Sunny Point has continued, uninterrupted access to the Army's network, while also reducing the footprint, reducing the attack surface and increasing throughput capacity to 10 gigabytes."
The PdM-I3MP integrated project team modernized, streamlined and standardized Sunny Point's network with 10 Gbps switches and routers as part of the over-arching initiative to improve the Army network. The initiative is referred to as Network Modernization -- CONUS, or NETMOD-C.
Chinn says, "The Army is following industry best practices to increase the capacity of the network, which will enable Unified Communications (UC) services (VoIP, Chat, IM, Presence, VTC, etc.) with assured and sufficient bandwidth. These network modernizations increased the efficiency, security, predictability, and reliability of the network to ensure Soldiers have sufficient bandwidth to complete their mission."
On the NETMOD-C team, William Richardson served as the project team lead, assisted by Barry Shambaugh and subject-matter-expert Thuan Phan, a PdM-I3MP computer networks engineer. Together, they planned and executed the network upgrade project. Assisted by Shambaugh, Richardson managed the day-to-day operations, coordinating and collaborating with PdM-I3MP's industry partner, Vision Ability and Execution (VAE).
Richardson says, "This project was a great success, and we are satisfied with the end product. It directly increased the network capacity and improved the network security at Sunny Point, while setting the conditions for Sunny Point to benefit from DISA Enterprise Services."
Phan says, "By employing Multi-Protocol Label Switching and other transport upgrades designed to exponentially increase the throughput of the Army network to installations like Sunny Point, the Army network is on its way to being a single, secure, standards-based network that enables global collaboration."