By Dan Lafontaine, PEO C3T Public AffairsDecember 17, 2018
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (Dec. 17, 2018) -- The Army is delivering a powerful new tool, via a web-based portal, to connect commanders at home station with their Soldiers in theaters around the world.
Establishing mission-command capabilities, from across the globe, will translate into more robust situational awareness and greater mission success for units on the move, said Flora Marshall, product lead for the Mission Command Support Center. Commanders will now have an agile platform -- requiring only a secure computer -- to translate their home-station resources to the Soldiers on the battlefield. For example, users can discuss friendly and enemy locations, resupply requests and route planning.
The Army's new software, known as Tactical Interface Tracking Application Node, enables detailed communications while displaying a common operational picture for a single or multiple areas of operations, such as the Middle East and Europe. TITAN uses the existing Blue Force Tracking network infrastructure that enables friendly force tracking for tens of thousands of Army and Marine Corps vehicles with Joint Battle Command-Platform hardware and software.
TITAN is providing these capabilities to Soldiers who have not yet been fielded Joint Battle Command-Platform.
"TITAN users can pull up maps, view multiple global locations, and color-code their Soldiers' locations," Marshall said. "It enables chat, messaging, sending attachments, filing situation reports, and creating distribution lists. We've created an intuitive user interface and consistent experience using design elements for a familiar look and feel. No formal training is required."
The system, which is currently in beta testing, is internally Army developed, maintained, and owned by the Mission Command Support Center, which is assigned to Project Manager Mission Command. This enables Army software developers to rapidly make changes according to units' operational requests, saving time and money with no additional costs for licenses or source code.
Units now have a requirement to monitor and message platforms in different regions from one location. This objective supports the HSMC goal of moving away from deploying division main elements to theater; instead, the Army wants to send smaller, more agile units with fewer logistics requirements.
"This new tool is enabling the Army's Home Station Mission Command initiative," Marshall said. "It's bringing communications capabilities and tools -- similar to what Soldiers use in the commercial world -- directly to the tactical edge."
TITAN does not require additional hardware or software to be deployed or maintained in the field. Users can log in anywhere in the world with a computer on the Secure Internet Protocol Router Network, using an internet browser, with no downloads necessary. From a single location, commanders can use TITAN to communicate with Soldiers in the field who are using the second- and third-generation JBC-P systems in any region of the world. TITAN users can also talk to one another.
Soldiers from the 82nd Airborne Division, 4th Infantry Division, 62nd Expeditionary Signal Battalion and 2nd Cavalry Regiment have tested the system thus far. Maj. Adam Cloninger, brigade S-6 officer-in-charge of 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th ID, used TITAN during the unit's National Training Center rotation in November.
"I can't tell you enough good things about the program," Cloninger said. "The amount of situational awareness it provided was instrumental to our success during this rotation."
The system's pilot started in August 2018 and will finish in February 2019. The next steps are to continue to develop additional capabilities and determine a release decision.
The U.S. Army Program Executive Office Command, Control and Communications-Tactical develops, acquires, fields and supports the Army's mission command network to ensure force readiness. This critical Army modernization priority delivers tactical communications so commanders and Soldiers can stay connected and informed at all times, even in the most austere and hostile environments. PEO C3T is delivering the network to regions around the globe, enabling high-speed, high-capacity voice, data and video communications to a user base that includes the Army's joint, coalition and other mission partners.