Cross-domain solutions for airborne operations
In the tactical environment, e-mail, chat, and file transfer, along with other bandwidth-intensive applications, are critical for the completion of missions, intelligence gathering, and the safety of the warfighter. Data must often be rapidly downgraded between different levels of security, but the Cross Domain Solution (CDS) products needed to do so are too cumbersome for airborne use and require a human-in-the-loop. This results in heavy dependence on satellite communications (SATCOM), which quickly overwhelms available channels. A Space, Weight, and Power (SWaP) constrained and automated airborne CDS is needed to add this additional capacity. In Phase I, SOLUTE determined this solution could be built and proposed designs for a Multiple Independent Levels of Security (MILS) based platform. In Phase II, SOLUTE has teamed with several industry leading companies to build a prototype system. The Team will define use cases, finalize the architecture, integrate and test the system, and demonstrate a prototype. SOLUTE will also define migration plans for future high assurance use. The Team will additionally perform a Certification and Accreditation (C & A) assessment and complete the documentation necessary to allow utilization of the prototype in future DoD exercises and trials. BENEFIT: The impact of this technology will be immediate once it is implemented, saving potentially hundreds of millions of dollars in DoD SATCOM spending by making greater use of existing airborne tactical communications assets. MILS is already in use throughout both DoD and commercial aviation as a widely accepted method for system consolidation of mission critical tasks. There are several airborne networking initiatives underway throughout the DoD requiring a SWaP constrained CDS, including the Air Force Objective Gateway, Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS), Navy Communications AirBorne Layer Expansion (CABLE), Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS), and the Tactical Mobile (TacMobile) communications program. Multi-level communications and downgrading is especially critical in Joint, Coalition, and even limited civilian applications in warfare, as well as Homeland Security and Humanitarian Assistance/Disaster Relief. With a small enough footprint, this technology can also make a significant impact in information downgrading within the $6.8 billon DoD Software Defined Radio (SDR) market. Additional opportunities exist within other Government and commercial SDR markets, as well as financial services, healthcare, utilities, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), and data center business sectors where high uptime and separation of sensitive data is critical to business operations.
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