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US DOD developing Cyber and electromagnetic battle management tool for mission planning for Joint Cyber and electromagnetic operations

Electronic warfare (EW) is any action involving the use of the electromagnetic spectrum or directed energy to control the spectrum, attack of an enemy, or impede enemy assaults via the spectrum. The purpose of electronic warfare is to deny the opponent the advantage of, and ensure friendly unimpeded access to, the EM spectrum. EW can be applied from air, sea, land, and space by manned and unmanned systems, and can target humans, communications, radar, or other assets. Russia has demonstrated high sophistication in the electromagnetic spectrum as evidenced in operations in Eastern Ukraine, causing much concern for members of the defense and academic community.

 

With the emergence of electromagnetic spectrum operations and electronic warfare playing a much larger role in conflicts going forward, the Army is fielding a new Electronic Warfare Planning and Management Tool (EWPMT) to provide commanders both greater understanding and awareness of the spectrum for better planning and decision making.

 

Raytheon is the main contractor for EWPMT and this year delivered Capability Drop II. “For the first time, electromagnetic spectrum operators can plan electronic warfare and control the battlefield spectrum in one standard tool,” Frank Pietryka, director of electronic warfare systems at Raytheon’s Space and Airborne Systems business stated at the time.

 

“What EWPMT does is it allows me to plan and manage the spectrum and give [the commander] multiple courses of action in a live GUI (graphical user interface). It gives him a graphical user interface on the picture of electronic warfare,” said Waters. “There’s no tool out there currently that can give him the ability to provide electronic attacks and electronic support capability.”

 

Countries are now engaged in new race to control the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum by integrating cyber and electronic warfare.  Traditionally Cyber and electronic warfare were distinct entities. Cyber warfare involves the actions by a nation-state or international organization to attack and attempt to damage another nation’s computers or information networks through, for example, computer viruses or denial-of-service attacks.

 

Raytheon Company’s Cyber and Electromagnetic Battle Management tool is the only electronic warfare planning and management tool to demonstrate interoperability with not only third-party software, but an entire system with completely different architecture.

Electronic Warfare Planning and Management Tool, or EWPMT

 

A tool to manage electronic warfare – Raytheon’s Electronic Warfare Planning and Management Tool, or EWPMT, enables commanders to detect, identify and manage signals in the crowded electromagnetic spectrum.

 

Key tasks the tool provides the force include capabilities to plan, coordinate, manage and deconflict electronic warfare and spectrum management operations; integration of electronic attack in the targeting process to ensure electronic attack can meet the commanders’ desired effect; and synchronization of electronic warfare and spectrum operations within the CEMA cell.

 

The Electronic Warfare Planning and Management Tool, or EWPMT, will provide an initial integrated Electronic Warfare System, or IEWS, capability by coordinating and synchronizing operations across the 2/3/6 staff sections within the command post from the joint task force level down to the battalion.

 

“EWPMT is really the first tool for the electronic warfare officer,” said Maj. Eric Burke, assistant product manager for electronic warfare integration. “There are a multitude of other systems that bring a partial capability for EW or spectrum planning. But EWPMT pulls everything together into a common operating picture similar to the other command systems but really is the background and the backbone of the system, which provides the robust modeling and simulation capability to give commanders confidence in what they are seeing and what effects they can expect.”

 

EWPMT features a composable, open architecture, which means it can be customized for different services, and fielded in almost any deployment environment. It’s been a U.S. Army program of record since 2014.

 

“The beauty of EWPMT is that we designed it from the ground up as a buildable architecture; the end product is determined by which plug-ins are included,” said Dan Kilfoyle, technical director of electronic warfare systems.

 

 

“Bottom line is EWPMT is a mission command software application that enhances the CEMA (cyber and electromagnetic activity) element’s ability to plan, coordinate and synchronize CEMA with mission command systems,” said Lt. Col. Marc Dorrer, product manager for electronic warfare integration.

 

“For the first time, electromagnetic spectrum operators can plan electronic warfare and control the battlefield spectrum in one standard tool,” said Frank Pietryka, director of electronic warfare systems at Raytheon’s Space and Airborne Systems business.

 

Incremental Capability development of EWPMT

In taking an incremental approach to fielding the EWPMT there are four capability drops planned, with the first set to hit in early fall. It will provide an initial capability to include 2/3/6 coordination of EW effects for mission command capabilities, analysis in the targeting process to employ EW assets and virtualize EW effects, and the electronic order of battle on the commander’s common operating picture.

 

“What we’re doing is an incrementally developed system so that we can provide incremental capabilities sooner and faster that are still beneficial to the warfighter,” Dorrer said.

 

The objective now for the army is to move EWPMT beyond headquarters and into forward command posts. A tool for this, Raven Claw, has been built on the foundational components of EWPMT Capability Drop 1 and 2 and was conceived during EW experimentation at Fort Sill.

 

Raven Claw is designed to work networked or in a disconnected, intermittent or latent environment. As a result it is not dependent on a host server or external data and can function on its own with last known data and real-time feeds from sensors all within the environs of a ruggedised military laptop.

 

For capability drop two “we’re adding onto it and providing additional capabilities as prioritized by the TRADOC capabilities manager,” Dorrer said. Additional capabilities in this set include the incorporation of spectrum management operations into mission planning and execution, mitigation of frequency fratricide, automation of collaboration between all echelons to increase agility and speed during missions, and facilitating exchange of data with joint forces. Dorrer said capability drop three is when the architecture will be established in order to command and control EW assets.

 

In terms of overall timelines, Burke told C4ISRNET that each capability drop takes roughly 18 to 24 months in duration. Capability drop two is slated for fiscal 2018 and drop three in 2019, with capability drop four completed in 2020 and fielded in 2021. Based on the current program of record and the requirements, officials at Program Executive Office Intelligence Electronic Warfare & Sensors said the tool will be fully completed and fielded to troops in 2021.

 

Officials didn’t offer specifics but said that global events, trends and threats were taken into account with the fielding of this tool.

 

As the EWPMT progresses through increments, “it will have real-time capability to show what’s happening in the electromagnetic spectrum on the battlefield from both an enemy and friendly perspective,” Col. Mark Dotson, TRADOC capabilities manager of electronic warfare, said at TechNet Augusta in August

 

EWPMT Integrated with Battle Damage Assessment

Vadum will develop a TRL 6 software module; Electronic Warfare Battle Damage Assessment Module (EW-BDA). The module will begin integration into the Electronic Warfare Planning and Management Tool (EWPMT) under development by Product Manager Electronic Warfare (PM EW) and Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems (SAS).

 

Phase II integration will culminate with testing and demonstration of the module within the EWPMT Rapid Development Baseline (RDB). The RDB is an internal Raytheon code base for testing new EWPMT capabilities. The module will also be developed for standalone demonstration outside of EWPMT with an open and modular implementation that supports integration into other DoD EW planning and management applications.

 

The BDA module will support EWPMT to improve situational awareness and will for the first time provide feedback on the effectiveness of EW missions in real-time. This will support EWMPTs objective to increase the EWOs impact on the commanders team, particularly at the Battalion and Brigade levels. As the importance of EW grows in modern warfare, the EWO can employ tools like EWPMT with EW-BDA to bring the weight of full spectrum EW operations to bear.

 

 

US Army’s Cyber electromagnetic activities ( CEMA )

The Army document “FM 3-38 Cyber Electromagnetic Activities”, provides doctrinal guidance and conducting cyber electromagnetic activities (CEMA) and the procedures and tactics for commanders and their staffs for planning, synchronizing and integrating CEMA.

 

US Army is also training in Cyber electromagnetic activities, Recently Personnel from the 25th Infantry Division and the 7th Signal Command Cyber Protection Brigade participated in a “Cyber Blitz” during the last two weeks of April at the Army Materiel Command’s Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center, or CERDEC, focusing on testing new operations concepts in realistic training scenarios, the Army said in a release.

 

A simulated tank assault was deterred using cyber weapons and electronic warfare technology during a training exercise, according to Defense Systems. Trainers stopped a simulated assault by targeting the tank crew’s radio and communication systems during the exercise at the Army’s National Training Center in Fort Irwin, California.

 

“These tanks had to stop, dismount, get out of their protection, reduce their mobility,” Capt. George Puryear, an Irregular Operations Officer at Fort Irwin told Defense Systems in the report. The vulnerability allowed the tanks to be easily defeated.

 

The broad category of cyber warfare includes jamming communication signals and infiltrating networks, both of which were demonstrated during the exercise. If a network is successfully infiltrated, it can be disabled or manipulated, allowing enemies to halt communication or relay false information to troops. The demonstration allowed the Army to explore the possibilities of infiltrating civilian networks to subdue the populace and invade territories, an official told Defense Systems.

 

Unlike training scenarios Soldiers typically go through, Cyber Blitz forced them to account for cyber electromagnetic activities-related interactions in a tactical operations center, or TOC. Soldiers faced a variety of integrated threat vignettes to better develop their situational understanding of cyber and the electromagnetic spectrum: was there a cyber-attack, a hostile electromagnetic effect or did a fellow unit accidentally interfere with communications?

 

“Our problem was how to optimize our ability to integrate staff functions, support the commander in a very high-intensity fight, in a fight that includes a very contested cyber and electromagnetic component,” Fogarty said. “Two years ago as we started to look at how the world was changing and how the threat was evolving, what we recognized was regional peers and the near-peer threat had started to understand what our advantages were and started to develop capabilities to counter those advantages,” said Maj. Gen. Stephen Fogarty, U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence commanding general.

 

“We’ve been talking about cyber for what appears to be a long time, but it’s really been for a relatively short time, only 10 years,” said Henry Muller, CERDEC director, whose organization researches and develops systems and technologies for cyber and electromagnetic activities. “As technology evolves so rapidly and we continue to eat up and crowd the electromagnetic spectrum, to be able to operate in cyber is becoming more and more important to the Army.”

 

Cyber and electromagnetic battle management tool fits neatly into existing EW platforms

Raytheon Company’s Cyber and Electromagnetic Battle Management tool is the only electronic warfare planning and management tool to demonstrate interoperability with not only third-party software, but an entire system with completely different architecture.

 

 

A recent demonstration integrated CEMBM into Raptor-X, an electronic warfare asset management tool used by the Marine Corps, building a foundation for information sharing across the joint battlespace. CEMBM extends cyber and electromagnetic spectrum awareness capabilities into Raytheon’s Electronic Warfare Program Management Tool, a U.S. Army program of record since 2014.

 

“We’ve achieved an interoperability breakthrough with CEMBM,” said Frank Pietryka, director, Airborne Information Operations, at Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems. “This type of community access to EWPMT-managed data means we can reach across services and produce a shared operating picture.”

 

CEMBM can quickly provide legacy systems with a common interface, reducing end-user training and support. Raptor-X-managed sensor data can be used with EWPMT situational awareness and geospatial information management capabilities.

 

CEMBM’s open architecture allows for the rapid deployment of new EW and cyber techniques to manage temporal, geospatial and data-driven events. It can employ streaming data to trigger response, execute jobs, enhance resources and manage data.

 

“CEMBM offers a near-real-time ability to respond to threats automatically or with a person on the loop,” said Pietryka. “This ability to choose how to respond accommodates complexity in planned execution for deliberate and dynamic targets during the mission.”

 

CEMBM, already at Technology Readiness Level-7, is building on its 2016 participation in military exercises as it is further developed for future exercises, a risk-reduction and technology maturation effort for EWPMT and a variety of customer applications. Raytheon will add new capabilities drawn from industry, including small businesses, academia and government research laboratories in future iterations

 

 

 

References and Resources also include:

https://defence.nridigital.com/global_defence_technology_special/information_overload_visualising_electronic_warfare_to_manage_data_proliferation

https://www.c4isrnet.com/intel-geoint/isr/2016/10/11/new-army-ew-tool-allows-for-greater-mission-planning-awareness/

About Rajesh Uppal

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