ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — To provide cyber and electronic warfare environment visualization tools to maneuver forces, the Army recently provided the III Armored Corps, headquartered at Fort Hood, Texas, with an initial version of Cyber Situation Understanding, or Cyber SU, capability.
As the first unit equipped with Cyber SU applications, III Armored Corps headquarters elements are now provided organic capability to enable visualization, analysis and understanding of cyber and electromagnetic activities within their area of operations and be able to detect and mitigate cyber threats at the tactical level.
Unlike systems designed specifically for cyber missions at the strategic level, Cyber SU ingests data from multiple Army data sources and converges that information onto the modernized mission command system called the Command Post Computing Environment, or CPCE. CPCE applications provide III Corps staff and commanders with a common operational picture, which now includes Cyber and Electromagnetic Activities, or CEMA.
“Cyber SU serves as the digital, acetate overlay to provide CEMA awareness, mission impacts, risks and visualization within the Army command posts to assist tactical commanders with making more informed decisions in multi-domain operations,” said Lt. Col. Scott Shaffer, product manager for Mission Command Cyber, under Program Executive Office for Command, Control, Communications-Tactical.
Both Cyber SU and CPCE are hosted on the Tactical Server Infrastructure hardware, which increases server power and reduces the hardware footprint.
“[The Tactical Server Infrastructure] provides efficiencies to the Army by hosting multiple programs such as Cyber SU versus fielding separate hardware, which would cost more money, use up more space in vehicles and command posts, and require more time and effort to haul equipment between locations,” said Maj. Brian Quinn, assistant product manager for Cyber SU.
To provide the Army with additional insight into future Cyber SU developmental efforts, the 1st Armored Division, headquartered at Fort Bliss, Texas, is now participating in a Soldier Touch Point at the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, California, which will be followed by a developmental test with the unit in November.
Along with III Corps, the Army plans to field Cyber SU to approximately 10 additional corps, division and Multi-Domain Task Force units over the next year. In fiscal year 2023, the Army will continue to develop Cyber SU to target the brigade combat team echelon and above and focus on awareness of adversarial CEMA to obtain full cyber battlespace situational awareness.
“Cyber SU is the latest tool in the Army’s arsenal to facilitate informed planning, timely decision making and mission accomplishment in the cyber-contested operating environment,” Shaffer said. “Tying this capability into CPCE’s user-friendly interface has been the critical differentiator for obtaining cyber information critical for command post operations.”
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.