IEEE Military Communications Conference
30 October – 3 November 2023 // Boston, MA, USA
Communications Supporting Military Operations in a Contested Environment



In the face of modern military challenges, there's a pronounced shift towards federated coalition operations, underscored by a challenging landscape of compressed decision-making timelines, hybrid warfare, multi-domain operations, and unforeseen adversarial dynamics. Coupled with this is the increasing need for effective, time and resource efficient simulations and emulations to test and evaluate these operations.

The emerging complexity of operations mandates commanders to assess situations swiftly, drawing from comprehensive information sources. As modern warfare transcends traditional political and military boundaries, incorporating dimensions like social media, cyber threats, and the space domain, the war theatre becomes broader and less predictable. This complexity is exacerbated when effects converge on targets through various kinetic and non-kinetic means, demanding cross-domain operational planning.

NATO, alongside its partners - nations, civilian entities, international organizations, and industry players - is tasked with facilitating federated communications, core services, CIS security, and cyberspace capabilities. A significant challenge in these operations is establishing robust information exchange, interoperability, and federation-level situational awareness. This calls for not just advanced technology but also trust and the delicate balance between the "need to know" and "responsibility to share."

Parallelly, standard military testing and evaluation now lean heavily on simulated/emulated scenarios, courtesy of the commoditization of computing, AR/VR, and game rendering engines. While "toy" scenarios address specific aspects of the problem, the demand is for tools and environments that holistically emulate multiple battlefield facets concurrently. These simulations must be both realistic and reproducible, ensuring tested solutions don't specialize merely on selective data.

This integrated session delves into topics central to the federation of military capabilities and the importance of sophisticated emulation/simulation tools. We will cover both the technical and non-technical aspects crucial for forward-looking CIS, cyberspace capabilities, and the development and assessment of comprehensive simulation frameworks.

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