Editor’s Note: This is the second of a three-part series on the future of how Air Force security forces will guard its nuclear missile fields.
Now, as the Air Force prepares to stand up the LGM-35A Sentinel to replace the aging Minuteman III ICBM, the security forces who guard them are also due for an update. Though their mission has never faltered, much of the equipment is obsolete.
Depending on the season, these snow- or mud-covered roads can stop even the hardy Humvee. That won’t be the case with the new Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV), billed as more reliable, more mobile in rough terrain, and better protected than the Humvee. It is also smarter, with computers in the dashboard that help Airmen keep track of their fellow defenders and build situational awareness.
ROP System Awarded
ROP utilizes IRON, an easy-to-deploy Integrated MANET Antenna System on fixed towers and poles to create a permanent Wave Relay® MANET coverage area. Around 700 IRON systems will be installed to deliver 25,000 square miles of coverage, connecting 75 operation centers, and over 1,000 Security Force vehicles—resulting in the largest MANET network in the world.
With ROP in place, security personnel on a missile field can now maintain constant communication through the towers to an Operations Center (OC). Likewise, the staff at the OC can follow the movement, and know the precise location, of the Security Forces on a digital map, also known as a Common Operational Picture (COP). Both parties can seamlessly share critical tactical mission data for information fusion and action.
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The Association of Air Force Missileers
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