You can feel the excitement in the air. It is palpable at the Cyber Center of Excellence where instructors at the LandWarNet School, Brant Hall, went through months of instructor and key personnel training, installed new equipment, developed training material, and now are training the newest wave of students on the Army’s latest signal equipment.
The Warfighter Information Network-Tactical Increment 2 program brings an On-The-Move communications capability to the Army. WIN-T Increment 2 adds warfighter mobility and provides a communication network down to the company level. The Tactical Communications Nodes in Increment 2 is the first step to providing a mobile infrastructure on the battlefield. Combined with mobile Points of Presence, Vehicle Wireless Packages, and Soldier Network Extensions, Increment 2 enables mobile battle command from division to company level in a completely ad-hoc, self-forming network.
The WIN-T Increment 2 addition of embedding communications gear in commander’s vehicles enables secure Internet protocol router, or SIPR, into the warfighting platform. Commanders and select staff have the ability to maneuver anywhere on the battlefield and maintain connectivity to the network.
Early fielding of WIN-T Increment 2 equipment to the training base allowed resident training on Fort Gordon to begin Oct. 10, 2013. This is ground breaking. Usually the Army’s newest equipment is fielded to units in the operational Army – deploying units – and the training base gets fielded once the most critical needs are filled for the operational force.
The initial training strategy for WIN-T Increment 2 called for the advance individual training of military occupational specialty 25N, nodal network systems operator-maintainer, to be expanded from 20 to 26 weeks. The first two 25N WIN-T INC 2 trained classes will graduate this month from the expanded course. These Soldiers are receiving training on the Tactical Communications Node and Joint Gateway Node. In addition to switching operations, the 25N Soldiers will have to learn the transmission systems that are integrated into the TCN.
Additionally, MOS 25Q, multichannel transmission systems operator-maintainer, Soldiers must learn how to install, operate, and maintain the tactical relay tower. To support these training requirements, a suite of WIN-T Increment 2 equipment was fielded to the Cyber Center of Excellence from August 2012 to December 2012 and IKP training took place from February 2013 to August 2013. The equipment is located in and around Brant Hall and the better part of 2013 was spent developing the training material for the new courses.
The training was developed under the Army Learning Model and is designed to support interactive, scenario based training to create critical thinking Soldiers. In 2014, the Cyber Center of Excellence is directing its attention to determining the WIN-T Increment 2 training requirements and developing training programs for noncommissioned officers, warrant officers, and officers.
The On-the-Move and Network Management capabilities brought to the battlefield by WIN-T Increment 2 enables commanders at all levels to stay connected exchanging critical battlefield data and communications in support of the warfighter. With its new WIN-T training capability, the Cyber Center of Excellence will remain on the cutting edge of the tactical network.