CWIX 2012 Addresses the Core of NATO Efficiency: Interoperability
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The 2011 exercise enforced many major achievements, more is expected while planning for the 2012 annual event in Poland.
Interoperability Focussed Forum
The NATO Coalition Warrior Interoperability exploration, experimentation and examination eXperiment (CWIX) is a Military Committee directed, North Atlantic Council (NAC) endorsed and and Consultation, Command and Control (C3) Board guided Bi-Strategic Command (Bi-SC) programme designed to support the continuous improvement in interoperability for the Alliance. The CWIX programme provides an opportunity for NATO Nations, Partner Nations, Contact Nations, and NATO Agencies to prove, disprove, and improve NATO, National and Coalition Consultation, Command & Control, Communications, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) interoperability. CWIX is also a forum for interoperability testing of operational systems currently in use by NATO-led operations such as International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and NATO Response Force (NRF).
CWIX provides a unique venue that allows systems and network engineers to come together to solve existing interoperability issues and explore and share potential solutions in anticipation of future operations and budget constraints. This forward thinking, coupled with solving existing interoperability issues, makes CWIX attractive for NATO and Nations.
Major General Willemse remarked:
"The benefit for Nations and NATO Agencies to test at CWIX continues to bear fruit. Not just in the successes but in the interoperability issues discovered now instead of during operations."
In the Spirit of Smart Defence
To help with the budget constraints, NATO has developed a Smart Defence Concept. NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen has stated:
"I know that in an age of austerity, we cannot spend more. But neither should we spend less. So the answer is to spend better and to get better value for money to help nations to preserve capabilities and to deliver new ones. This means we must prioritise, we must specialise, and we must seek multinational solutions. Taken together, this is what I call Smart Defence."
CWIX embraces this concept by pooling and sharing of resources to achieve interoperability before deployment and collaboration on future initiatives in a multinational environment.
CWIX 2011 Outcome & Achievements
Participation from 13 NATO Nations, Partner Nations, Contact Nations and 7 NATO Commands brought 103 capability configurations to conduct interoperability testing. A few accomplishments included:
- Afghanistan Mission Network (AMN) Interoperability Testing — A successful demonstration of data exchange between two complex databases; Joint Fires Focus Area significantly improved the capability to automate the one-way exchange of target data from USA systems to NATO systems.
- Operational Testing Environment — Real time operational data was introduced into the NATO CWIX network. Live civilian convoy feeds were used to augment the scenario.
- Geospatial Interoperability Testing — Testing validated the NATO Bi-SC Recognized Environment Picture (REP) concept that could be implemented within the AMN.
- National Achievements — CWIX has the capability to meet the needs of Nations and NATO Agencies in the area of interoperability testing and individual training: an increased trend for Nations requesting hands-on training with C4ISR systems and other associated capabilities.
CWIX 2012: Outlook
CWIX is steered by the Senior Management Group (SMG) in which every participating Nation is represented by a national lead. The SMG decides on the Goals & Objectives at the beginning of each planning cycle. Several of them, in 2012 support the NATO Smart Defence concept and the Lisbon Summit objectives, the continued testing for the AMN, as well as Bi-SC Automated Information System (AIS), Collective Logistics and Medical, Air Command and Control System (ACCS), supporting the enhancement of NATO's overall Cyber Defence, Joint Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (JISR) and exploring emerging or experimental technologies in the fields of cloud and mobile computing. CWIX is also in the process of linking the test results to the NATO Architecture Framework by mapping the results to the C3 Classification Taxonomy. This will enable CWIX to connect the "to be" NATO architecture to the real world systems and the test results and get the visibility over areas with or without developed systems.
A Success Story
CWIX continues to provide a unique interoperability testing venue with 139 capability configurations currently registered to participate in 2012; a 25% increase from 2011. A 100% increase in the number of NATO systems participating over the last two years has enabled more robust testing between national and NATO systems.
CWIX is the only event that encompasses all facets of the information system life cycle. It is conceivable that a system could start at an experimental stage and continue to conduct interoperability testing through implementation and to system upgrades or design changes.
For further information on CWIX 2012 contact email@example.com
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