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[] US Air Force erweitert Datenlinks zu Flugzeugen,

Air Force sets course for
upgrading aircraft datalinks

by Capt Todd Fleming
Aerospace Command and Control &
Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance
Center Public Affairs

(AFPN) -- The Aerospace Command and
Control & Intelligence, Surveillance, and
Reconnaissance Center here is currently
finishing work on a Tactical Datalink Roadmap
that will chart the path ahead for upgrading the
Air Force's datalink capability.

Datalinks enable information to be sent
graphically via a computer link to aircraft versus
relying on voice communication over radios,
said Capt. Kjäll Gopaul, the Aerospace C2 &
ISR Center's subject matter expert on tactical

"The advantages of datalinks are many," Gopaul
said. "They provide a significant increase in
situational awareness by providing more
information graphically. They provide
unambiguous information that is not subject to
interpretation since it is always displayed in the
same way. They also provide information
assurance in that everyone is assured of getting
the same information. All of this serves to
increase combat effectiveness and decrease the

Datalinks are exceptionally effective, Gopaul
said. The Joint Tactical Information Distribution
System Operational Special Project Report to
Congress in 1997 said that they increase the
air-to-air kill ratio by three times during the day,
and by greater than four times at night.
Targeting data from the JEFX 2000 report
indicated that air-to-ground targeting success
increases by four times to nearly 100% through
the use of datalinks. 

"Right now we have less than 400 aircraft that
have datalinks," said Gopaul. "Within the next
fifteen years, that number is expected to
explode by 1000 percent. By having a roadmap,
a way ahead, we ensure that this powerful
combat multiplier is fielded smartly."

Gopaul stated that the roadmap, currently in
coordination, prioritizes tactical datalink
implementation within each Air Force mission
area and provides an integrated, prioritized
implementation across all mission areas.

By incorporating Department of Defense
guidance into the roadmap, the Air Force is also
ensuring there will be datalink interoperability
among the services and at the allied level, said

"Implementing the Air Force chief of staff's
vision to establish tactical data links as critical
enablers of Air Force and joint combat
capabilities will be our primary goal," said Col.
Viktor Jonkoff, director, Tactical Datalinks
Systems Program Office at the Electronics
Systems Center, Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass.

The Air Force's effort on providing these
datalinks is being led by the Aerospace C2 &
ISR Center, which will consolidate
requirements, provide an integrated budget
submission, and monitor the execution, and by
ESC, which will be the focal point for integration
and infrastructure

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