Huntsville, AL – The Assured Positioning, Navigation and Timing/Space (APNT/Space) Cross-Functional Team (CFT) announced the approval of the Tactical Space Layer (TSL) Abbreviated Capability Development Document (A-CDD) today. This A-CDD validates the need and provides the source for desired capabilities to execute rapid experimentation and prototyping efforts for tactical space-based sensors with supporting ground-based equipment. The TSL A-CDD will deliver solutions necessary to shorten the sensor-to-shooter (S2S) timeline and equip the Army Multi-Domain Operations (MDO) Capable Force by 2028 to the MDO-Ready Force by 2035.
“Space is an important component of battlefield dominance,” said Mr. Willie Nelson, director of the APNT/Space CFT. “The Tactical Space Layer A-CDD supports a unity of effort and enables the acceleration of informing, procuring, and fielding of advanced space-based capabilities to the warfighter.”
The purpose of the TSL A-CDD is to synchronize a multitude of dependent activities across the warfighting functions and CFTs by incorporating existing and developing space-based programs and assets to streamline the process of delivering mobile, scalable, interoperable, and agile capabilities to the field quickly. The A-CDD will inform the development of materiel and non-materiel requirements for Program of Record procurement and fielding to the Force.
“The TSL will provide deep area sensing, rapid targeting, and unmatched battlefield situational awareness,” said Lt. Col. Travis Tallman, director of the CFT’s Tactical Space Signature Effort. “Leveraging the TSL will further enable long range precision fires and ground maneuvers in GPS-challenged environments.”
Access to the TSL will allow soldiers to operate in anti-access/area denied environments. Additionally, it will shorten the S2S timeline required for MDO. The APNT/Space CFT and its partners, are currently conducting a multiple year, multiple exercise campaign of learning, spanning U.S. Northern Command, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, and U.S. European Command theaters.
“Enhancing the TSL has been, and will continue to be, a team effort,” said Nelson. “We have been coordinating with our military, national, and joint partners from the start to ensure our ability to provide unprecedented information to theater commanders at echelon.” The APNT/Space CFT coordinates regularly with organizations across the modernization enterprise as well as the intelligence community to enhance warfighter access to space-based capabilities. In 2019, a TSL Interagency Memorandum of Agreement was signed by United States Secretary of the Army, the Director of the National Reconnaissance Office, the Director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and the Director for Defense Intelligence.
An integrated team effort, a number of organizations were key players in getting the TSL A-CDD approved, to include the Long-Rage Precision Fires (LRPF) CFT, the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC), the Program Executive Office Intelligence, Electronic Warfare & Sensors, the Project Manager Positioning, Navigation and Timing, the Intelligence Center of Excellence and the Fires Center of Excellence as well as Army G-2.
“The relationship between SMDC and the APNT/Space CFT is very strong," said Thomas E. Webber, director of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command Technical Center. "SMDC provides the critical science and technology and capabilities development support to the CFT. As the Army proponent for space and high altitude it only makes sense that SMDC would play a critical role in delivering a Tactical Space Layer for the Army. Our cooperation is truly a team effort. At the end of the day it's about delivering for our warfighter and I could not be more proud of the entire team for all that they do to enable our Army."
The SMDC Center of Excellence Army Capability Managers (ACM) for Space and High Altitude (SHA) played a major role in developing the written requirement and getting it through the approval process.
"The TSL A-CDD will enable the Army to rapidly experiment and prototype capabilities necessary for ground commanders to compete and win in a Multi-Domain environment,” said Col. Timothy Dalton, ACM SHA Director. “This is the first big step to identify and establish validated Army requirements in the space mission area."
The TSL will be integrated with the Tactical Intelligence Targeting Access Node (TITAN), the Army’s next generation intelligence ground station, which will be a crucial component to enable deep sensing and shortening the S2S timeline. TITAN will have the ability to access aerial and terrestrial sensors while enabling assured access to national, commercial and TSL sensors to identify and deliver targetable data directly to fires networks that support LRPF.
Tactical Space is one of three APNT/Space CFT Signature Efforts, which will develop and integrate a strategy to provide survivable, responsive and resilient space-based reconnaissance, surveillance, target acquisition and communications capabilities to enable S2S operations through direct downlink and tasking at all echelons of command.
The APNT/Space CFT plans to assess and test TSL prototypes during a series of live fire exercises later this year in U.S. Army Europe and Africa (USAREURAF) and U.S. Army Pacific (USARPAC). The team will also be assessing TSL prototypes during Project Convergence at White Sands Missile Range, NM and the Yuma Proving Grounds, AZ.
For more information, go to https://www.army.mil/futures, https://armyfuturescommand.com/apnt/ or https://www.army.mil/futures#org-about. Or you can visit the CFT’s LinkedIn page at https://www.linkedin.com/showcase/assured-positioning-navigation-and-timing-cross-functional-team.