05 Dec 05. The Army conducted the capstone test for the System Development and Demonstration phase of the Warfighter Information Network-Tactical program Nov. 3-15 at Fort Huachuca, Ariz.
The test, known as a Demonstration Test/Operational Test, was performed using functional prototypes which represented each of the intended WIN-T production configuration items in a live network and was followed by an operational demonstration Nov. 16 and network security threat testing Nov. 17 and 18.
The capstone was a demo to senior leaders of the Army and industry. “This network brings the Army into the future, now,” said Col. Angel Colon, WIN-T Project Manager. “The demo executed flawlessly. While we have not received results that give us a detailed view of all aspects of WIN-T in action, I am confident that the objectives of the test were met and will demonstrate tremendous progress.”
The system was operated by soldiers from the 11th Signal Brigade who received a two-week training course on WIN-T operations. Testing was conducted in accordance with scenarios provided by the Training and Doctrine Command Signal Center. Objectives of the test were to demonstrate that critical technologies operate at a Technology Readiness Level of six or above and that 14 user-defined exit criteria are met. Network traffic generated by live users was augmented by traffic network generators which emulated traffic loads to match the information exchange performance required for WIN-T production models.
Critical technologies and capabilities demonstrated by WIN-T included mobile ad-hoc networking utilizing a three-tier communications architecture including ground, airborne, and satellite layers, high bandwidth on demand while operating on-the-move and at-the-quick-halt. Other critical technologies included secure wireless communications and dynamic network management tools. WIN-T demonstrated interoperability with current, joint and coalition networks including Joint Network Node and reach back into strategic Single Tactical Entry Point (STEP) sites.
ATEC Operational Test Command conducted Information Assurance threat testing on the WIN-T network. The network proved invulnerable to threat exploits, wireless interrogation, virus insertion and denial of service attacks.
The Project Manager and General Dynamics team sponsored a “live” demonstration of the full range of WIN-T capabilities with all components of the WIN-T DT/OT network in a simulated mission that extended services to individual dismounted Soldiers during a VIP Day Demonstration.
Senior level attendees at VIP Day included senior level representatives in acquisition, information technology, test evaluation, research, and the Army Signal community, including Lt. Gen. Joseph Yakovac, Military Deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Army of Acquisition, Logistics and Technology, Lt. Gen. Steven Boutelle, Army Chief Information Officer and Maj Gen. Michael R. Mazzucchi, Program Executive Officer, Command, Control, Communications – Tactical and Commanding General, Communications Electronics Life Cycle Management Command, Brig. Gen.(P) Carroll Pollett, Command General, Network Enterprise Technology Command, and Brig. Gen. Randolf Strong, Commanding General, US Army Signal Center.
The WIN-T network was developed by a team led by General Dynamics, Taunton, MA. Its principle members are Lockheed Martin, BAE, Harris Corporation, and L-3. “The General Dynamics team met my expectations,” said Colon.
Collectively, DT/OT will emerge with many valuable technology assessments and operational insights that will serve as a transformational step for the warfighter and the Army. ATEC expects to deliver an early look of their independent assessment in January.
“It was a synergistic teaming effort between warfighter representatives, testers, program management, and industry partners. Disparate technologies went rapidly from the test bench and into a mobile, ad hoc, dynamically adaptive network