Aerial Warfare

Collins Aerospace Demonstrates Multi-domain Battlespace for Utah Air National Guard


Collins Aerospace successfully demonstrated advanced communication, mission computing and sensor technologies to support CJADC2 (Combined Joint All Domain Command and Control) and ABMS (Advanced Battle Management) initiatives for the Utah Air National Guard at the Roland R. Wright Air National Guard Base in Salt Lake City, Utah. In collaboration with 151st Air Refueling Wing, the demonstration showed how integrated technologies and joint connectivity can provide warfighters with the actionable data and increased situational awareness they need to make informed, split-second decisions in evolving threat conditions against cyber-sophisticated adversaries.

The demonstration took place on a Block 45 retrofitted KC-135 featuring Collins’ real-time information in the cockpit (RTIC) system and included live-fly elements that simulated a forward deployed element as the primary information gathering source and an airborne relay element. Once the forward deployed element identified and processed key target information, it transmitted collected data over the Collins Tactical Targeting Networking Technology (TTNT) mesh network directly to the flight deck. Collins’ Rosetta message processing software and Multiple Level Security (MLS) system captured this data and encrypted the incoming messages to ensure they retained their respective security levels.

The Utah Air National Guard's Aircraft 0275 is the first and only Block 45 RTIC modified KC-135 to date.
The Utah Air National Guard’s Aircraft 0275 is the first and only Block 45 RTIC modified Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker military aerial refueling aircraft to date. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Annie Edwards)

Then the software seamlessly sent the messages to those leading and/or executing the mission in the moment. The ability to distribute secure data to those in different security areas is a key differentiator of the Collins MLS system and solves a major challenge in maintaining secure dataflow communication across the congested battlespace.
Collins also adapted a MOSA (Modular Open Systems Architecture) approach with its mission processor to showcase a dramatic improvement in situational awareness with their next generation of cockpit integration, edge computing, and containerization. The entire demonstration built upon the foundational capabilities of the RTIC program-of-record to provide increased joint connectivity and improved situation awareness technology for aircrews at the tactical edge.

Collins Aerospace, a Raytheon Technologies subsidiary, is one of the world’s largest suppliers of aerospace and defense products, headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, United States. For more than 85 years, Collins Aerospace has remained a world leader in the design, development, and integration of airborne and ground communication systems, including over 20 years of providing data link equipment to the U.S. military. Collins Aerospace is engaged in designing, manufacturing and servicing systems and components for commercial aviation, business aviation, military and defense, helicopters, space, airports, and other industries. Collins Aerospace has six strategic business units: Aerostructures, Avionics, Interiors, Mechanical Systems, Missions Systems, Power & Controls.

Utah Air National Guard and Collins Aerospace Demonstrates Multi-domain Battlespace Connectivity on KC-135
The Utah Air National Guard, in collaboration with Collins Aerospace, successfully demonstrated advanced communication, mission computing and sensor technologies to support JADC2 and ABMS initiatives. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sergeant Danny Whitlock)
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