Working closely with a number of SMEs (Small / Medium Enterprises), Fujitsu has developed an innovative Architecture that enables the seamless integration of hard-to-reach tactical information with existing operational information and intelligence. Fujitsu’s solution provides the secure interface between the tactical architecture and more strategic, (fixed or deployed) HQ-based communications. The architecture exploits the open lean services architecture developed by 2iC and published by MOD, to provide a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) within the tactical environment.
By providing SOAs in both the
operational and tactical military domains, it creates opportunities to
exploit the Internet of Things (IoT) and integrate other legacy systems /devices that have the capability to deliver a Force Multiplier effect by generating holistic and live situational awareness. As an example Fujitsu’s solution has linked to the mounted or dismounted tactical User via the Ultra Electronics COMBATCONNECT soldier vest. The nature of the platforms and devices used in the tactical space means they must operate under considerable constraints. Low bandwidth or devices designed to run on low power make communications and information exchange with this equipment difficult. Differing levels of security classifications and differing network owners further compound the issue. Fujitsu’s tactical IoT solution uses a lean, low bandwidth protocol, pulling previously dispersed information domains together utilising 2iC’s DSEI innovation award winning tactical cross domain architecture and a Deep Secure IX guard to protect the boundary between the low and high security classifications. The result is the delivery of critical data and intelligence from the hard-to-reach
Battlespace environment, to the command and control environment.
Connecting Command & Control with the Battlespace
Establishing this communications link, and enabling the access to and sharing of this data, there is the potential to dramatically enrich a holistic operational picture for Command & Control. It delivers critical information and intelligence on assets, people and equipment, for new and existing tactical systems alike:
■■People – evaluating the health and wellbeing of soldiers in the
Battlespace, including temperature and motion sensor data through
the Ultra Electronics COMBATCONNECT vest, compliant with the
Generic Soldier Architecture (GSA) Defence Standard 23-12
■■Vehicles – collecting health and usage monitoring (HUMS) data onfleets of vehicles across the Battlespace
■■Equipment – collating and analysing RFID-tagged equipment and
munitions to report on usage and consumption, monitor
environmental storage conditions, assess condition and provide alertsof potential damage or malfunction captured through Fujitsu’s
■■Tracking – collecting and analysing positional data (personnel,
equipment and material in transit) using GPS
■■Bowman COMBAT supporting COP consolidation within the Commandand Control application suite
■■Tactical intelligence reports
■■Collection of ‘street view’ style imagery taken from soldiers
Dynamic, Real-Time Intelligence
Connecting tactical IoT sensor-based devices and bringing the data intothe Command & Control space unifies information management across the SOA and by automating data transmission without human
intervention, enhances Master Data Management. The outcome is the provision of accurate, dynamic, real-time information and intelligence that will allow users at every level in the Command chain to plot, visualise and share a consistent and accurate operating picture. The enriched situational awareness enables improved decision-making. The enablement of communications also widens the potential for tactical users to share or send information across the Battlespace or back up the command chain. By interacting with IoT devices (e.g. a pair of smart gloves) or other sensor-based devices that recognises the actions a user making can further enrich the situational awareness. For instance, a soldier could signal the presence and approximate direction of the enemy using recognised hand or finger gestures.
Unified Information Management
Fujitsu’s tactical IoT solution has been designed to extend the
capabilities of our existing COAST (Comprehensive Operational
Application and Services Toolset) solution, providing unified information management that can be deployed rapidly with low risk. The Lean Services Architecture supports a single information environment, whilst ensuring maximum reuse of existing assets and investments. Fujitsu’s COAST solution provides an integrated C2 application set and SOA environment that allows Defence and National Security users to get the very best out of the information to which they have access. Unified information management is enabled by the Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) that links the applications that users are accessing on a day-to-day basis with the information sources that contain the data and associated contextual analysis, seamlessly applying any required protocol
This also provides the mechanism for exploiting microservices
into the future (e.g. common geo-services) that will enhance
Master Data Management by ensuring that multiple applications draw on the same information sources. This all takes place within a highly secure environment that enables the different components to coherently and seamlessly talk to each other, delivering a fusion of near real-time information to sufficiently authorised end users.
Given the nature of the information being exchanged, the security of the system is of paramount importance. Full cybersecurity capabilities are built in to the core of all of Fujitsu’s ICT solutions for the Defence and National Security sector. Unlike many other application hosting solutions, Fujitsu’s COAST solution has been designed and built with security at its heart. Fujitsu consults extensively with CESG, the Information Security arm of GCHQ, and the definitive voice on the technical aspects of information security in Government. The result is that the COAST solution
is an inherently secure system that is CESG Tailored Assurance Service (CTAS) certified.
The integration of IOT feeds from the tactical environment introduces additional security challenges. Fujitsu have integrated the Deep Secure IX guard to protect the interconnect, assuring the integrity of the information exchanged. Integration with GELS: delivering enterprise class search services to military standards Fujitsu’s tactical IoT architecture also integrates with our Georeferenced & Encyclopaedic Lookup Service, or GELS, further enriching the overall situational awareness capability. GELS search and visualisation capability allows users to discover and gather situational awareness data from a wide range of source systems providing:
■■Users with improved situational awareness and informed intelligence
■■Third party C2I2 and military geospatial applications with aggregated
information services and geospatial visualisation.
GELS provides users with the ability to fully exploit both real time and historic information across the enterprise to inform military decisions, and increase the effectiveness of force resources. GELS is based entirely on open web standards having been developed using primarily open-source, enterprise class technologies. It has been designed to support a range of military standards as used by UK, US and NATO partners. Adopting the Tactical IoT Lean Services Architecture across the Defence enterprise enables the collaboration and trusted sharing of applications
and information that enrich the whole picture available to Command and Control operations, truly enabling information to be a real Force Multiplier.