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JOINT FIRES NETWORK
Russ Green MSIM
JFN goes beyond the Navy … JFN is an initiative to coordinate efforts and to share intelligence / sensor data among all of the armed forces (including coalition forces) for unified prosecution of targets within a multi-dimensional theater of battle.
For a short-duration (10 week) project to be successful, it was necessary to focus on just that part the Navy plays in JFN and to concentrate on just the USW component within the Navy’s role in JFN.
NOTE:Narrowing the scope was the most difficult (and most necessary) step in the project planning process.
For this project, the information requirements for both JFN and CV-TSC systems were compared and contrasted. The information architecture, flow, control, and presentation were described. This was a low-impact, high-level (outside) look at both systems using publicly available (to the naval fleet) sources.
The goal of this project was to provide recommendations pertaining to the utility of using CV-TSC as the USW component of JFN based on their functions, information requirements, and system descriptions.
Using a (compressed) Readiness Assessment methodology, I sought to provide the CV-TSC community with enough useful information regarding JFN, and how the in-place CV-TSC component (USW) may fit within JFN standards, to allow this community to make decisions on how to proceed with their transformation to the “Net-Centric” Navy of the future.
READINESS ASSESSMENT PROCESS (COMPRESSED):
The U.S. Navy is employing new technologies to successfully accomplish their national security mission. They are moving toward “Net-Centric” information architecture for sensor data analysis, real-time targeting information, and “Command and Control” information flows. The system currently in place is one of “Stove Pipe” sensor / data arrays and information flows. The move to a “Net-Centric” system will allow for real-time information sharing, and will give battle zone (theater) commanders a more comprehensive, real-time picture of their “Area of Influence.”
The foundation of “Net-Centric” technologies will be commercial, off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware and software. A major information component of this future system, the Joint Fires Network (JFN), previously known as Naval Fires Network (NFN), will tie together sensor data and analysis from the old “Stove Pipe” warfare specialty groups such as Strike, Surface, Undersea, Air, and Mines. JFN is a collection of standards being moved forward to make the data analysis, targeting, and information sharing aspects of the system seamless.
Carrier Vessel Tactical Support Centers (CV-TSC) are currently deployed on all aircraft carriers. This COTS-based, Net-Centric system is used primarily for undersea warfare (USW). However, based on demonstrated capabilities inherent in the system, CV-TSC has been deployed in Strike, Maritime Interdiction Operations (MIO), Mine Warfare (MIW), Anti-Surface Warfare (ASUW), Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), and Air Operations Support (AOS).
Current CV-TSC Systems:
As part of conducting an efficient transformation from the “Stove Pipe” systems in the Navy today to the “Net-Centric” Navy of tomorrow, existing “Net-Centric” building blocks need to be identified. The purpose of this project was to identify the common and disparate functions between JFN and CV-TSC, focusing mainly on the USW components within each.
JOINT FIRES TARGETING CYCLE TARGETING DISCONNECTS
1) Current CV-TSC Systems graphic: Presentation for “CV-TSC Role in Battle Group USW As Currently Fielded” available from the Undersea Warfare center at Keyport, WA
2)Joint Fires Targeting Cycle graphic: “Concept of Operations for JOINT FIRES” available at
3) Targeting Disconnects graphic: “Navy Experimentation and Expeditionary Warfare” Navy Warfare Development Command, available at http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/ewc/Navwar.pdf
Basic architectures and functions were gathered for JFN & CV-TSC USW systems. Existing & desired networks are described below: