Allied Command Transformation’s Innovation Hub recently handed off a new networked product helping Allies track and share qualifications for Joint Terminal Attack Controllers, NATO military specialists who coordinate close air support for ground units.
Allied Command Transformation’s Assistant Chief of Staff Requirements Brigadier General Thorsten Jorgensen presented the Joint Terminal Attack Controller Enterprise Data Infrastructure to NATO's Allied Air Command on 27 Oct. in Norfolk, Virginia. Close Air Support Capability Section Head, Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Laatsch, accepted the product on behalf of Allied Air Command.
The Joint Terminal Attack Controller Enterprise Data Infrastructure was developed to meet a specific Allied Air Command request, made in early 2021. Allied Air Command described the need for a centralized digital system to track and share Joint Terminal Attack Controller qualifications within NATO and individual Nations, replacing traditional paper logbooks and spreadsheets.
The Allied Command Transformation Innovation Hub used cutting-edge methodology to deliver a Minimum Viable Product to Allied Air Command. The resulting product will allow for an easy-to-use interface and dashboard using an Allied Command Transformation platform to track qualifications. This innovation will continue to be used within the Allied Command Transformation platform and will promote greater interoperability and standardization throughout the Alliance.
"Allied Command Transformation has continued to push the envelope with innovative and digitally transformative tools for a wide variety of NATO areas of focus,” Jorgenson said. “The handover of this exciting product will provide Allied Air Command and Allies with one generic tool for tracking the qualification status of this important community.”
He continued, “This effort will save Allies time and money to develop their own solutions and will have a huge impact on interoperability and standardization amongst Allies, while speeding up the process of getting capabilities in the hands of warfighters.”
The Joint Terminal Attack Controller Enterprise Data Infrastructure was first unveiled at the Allied Air Command Close Air Support Conference in early 2022. It was widely accepted by the Joint Terminal Attack Controllers community as a tool to track training requirements among the Allies. During the conference several Nations expressed interest in implementing the solution immediately. As a result, Allied Air Command asked Allied Command Transformation to finalize the Joint Terminal Attack Controller Enterprise Data Infrastructure as their official Joint Terminal Attack Controller qualification-tracking tool through 2024.
“Our role within the Alliance is to support the warfighter, and kick-start innovative solutions for complex contemporary, current, and future challenges,” said Commander Andrei Mititelu, Acting Section Head of the Innovation Hub. “We are very excited to see the interest of the warfighters from Allies in this Minimum Viable Product and will continue to support it for further experimentation across the Alliance.”
The collaboration between Allied Command Transformation, Innovation Hub, Allied Air Command, and Allies in producing the Joint Terminal Attack Controller Enterprise Data Infrastructure has been a successful example of collaboration and innovation within NATO. Development of Minimum Viable Products like the Joint Terminal Attack Controller Enterprise Data Infrastructure present an opportunity to drive Allied Command Transformation’s Digital Transformation agenda and is real-world proof of innovative, agile processes to deliver better and faster results for the Alliance.
The Innovation Hub along with Allied Nations will continue to investigate the scalability of the Joint Terminal Attack Controller Enterprise Data Infrastructure Minimum Viable Product as a multinational capability development effort over the coming years, using the Innovation Hub Lab Capacity as Software Development Platform.