TAUNTON, Mass. — Leaders from the “Spartan Brigade,” 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, and 3rd ID headquarters attended a distinguished visitors day for the Army’s high-profile network communication pilot effort known as ABCT On-the-Move, or OTM, on Sept. 21 at the General Dynamics facility in Taunton, Massachusetts.
Supported by over 20 vendors, General Dynamics Mission Systems is the lead integrator for the upcoming ABCT OTM network pilot. During the demonstration, it displayed three different concepts of employment that the Spartan Brigade will assess during the Army’s pilot this winter at Fort Stewart.
The Program Executive Office Command, Control, Communications-Tactical, PEO C3T, is one of the U.S. Army offices that supports and delivers the Army’s network modernization strategy. The organization manages the ABCT OTM Network acquisition process through its Project Manager Tactical Network office.
“The communications assets used in the U.S. Army’s armored platforms must evolve so our formation can maintain mobility, and increase both lethality and survivability,” said Col. Terry R. Tillis, the commander of 2nd ABCT, 3rd ID. “In a contested environment, we must have robust and redundant communications to win in the multi-domain fight.”
As part of the development process, the OTM pilot will inform Army design and fielding decisions to deliver a modernized mobile tactical network to armored brigades as part of Capability Set 25, or CS25. The Army’s efforts to modernize tactical networks has already manifested in Capability Set 21 for infantry brigades and is being developed in Capability Set 23 for Stryker brigades, with armored brigades to be equipped with modernized network capabilities as part of CS25.
“The OTM pilot is a great opportunity to influence the future of how armored brigades fight in a congested and contested environment,” said Maj Todd M. Klinzing-Donaldson, head communications and network officer for the 2nd ABCT, 3rd ID. “The abundant redundancy and failover provided within the various network prototype configurations will inform Army decisions on what our armored formations need to enable the warfighter to fight and win.”
Klinzing-Donaldson and 1st Lt. Thomas J. Allen, head communications and network officer for the 6th Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd ABCT, 3rd ID, developed relationships with the Army and industry team and began giving instant feedback on the concepts.
"Actually putting hands on the equipment and being part of the planning process alongside the Army and industry engineers is the only way to fully grasp the nature and scope of modernizing an armored brigade’s communications,” said Allen. “Walking through the concepts on site reinforced the resolve that a successful modernization plan will require, and we are excited to be a part of the pilot to modernize the Army’s tactical network in armored brigades, increasing lethality and survivability for Soldiers."