The first Brigade-level deployment of the General Dynamics-built Warfighter Information Network – Tactical (WIN-T) Increment 2, the Soldier’s Network, is successfully supporting soldiers with the 4th Brigade, 10th Mountain Division (4/10) in Afghanistan. Their mission, supporting Afghan security forces, involves communications across dispersed forces in some of the most rugged, remote locations in Afghanistan.
Over this past summer, WIN-T Increment 2 participated in its first successful combat patrol utilizing its on-the-move capability between several network nodes. Voice over IP calls were placed and use of on-board mission command applications was successful.
Using WIN-T Increment 2, soldiers down to the company level have unprecedented secure access to voice and data that vastly increases their ability to communicate during a mission and on-the-move.
“Less than 10 years ago, it could have taken hours or days for brigade commanders to understand the detailed reports from soldiers on a patrol,” said Chris Marzilli, president of General Dynamics C4 Systems. “With WIN-T Increment 2, commanders and staff can talk, text and collaborate with one another on a conference call or chat room in real time, even moving at 25 miles-per-hours inside of their vehicles.”
During a recent Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) 13.2, U.S. Army Lt. Col. Robert M. Collins, former product manager for WIN-T Increment 2, said that several insights indicate the "positive impact this mobile network is going to have on the way we fight across the full spectrum of military operations. WIN-T Increment 2 will increase the pace at which the Army can conduct combat operations, extend operational distances for reach and reach back, while also decreasing the military decision-making time cycle."
Deployed in July as a Security Forces Advise and Assist Team, the soldiers of the 4/10 work as advisers to the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) – a critically important mission as United States military and coalition forces drawdown and the ANSF takes the lead for Afghanistan’s security.
The entire fleet of WIN-T Increment 2 vehicles helps to maintain mission-critical connectivity for soldiers and commanders at the company level and up to higher echelons. Tactical radios like the AN/PRC-154A Rifleman radio complete the Soldier’s Network extending network communications and connectivity to the dismounted soldier.
Over the summer Congresswoman Niki Tsongas remarked, “WIN-T is one of the Army’s top modernization efforts, providing unparalleled advantages to service members in the field and helping to save lives.”
In August, Senator Elizabeth Warren noted, “the Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (WIN-T) Army modernization program is an example of the kinds of efforts we should be supporting. …WIN-T improves the Army’s communications systems, helping to protect our soldiers by enabling them to more effectively and securely communicate while on the ground.”
The Soldiers’ Network is the centerpiece of Army’s network modernization strategy that includes WIN-T Increment 2 and Increment 3, the AN/PRC-154A Rifleman and AN/PRC-155 two-channel Manpack tactical radios, Nett Warrior and mission command on-the-move capabilities including Command Post of the Future (CPOF) and Tactical Ground Reporting (TIGR) systems.