C2BMC puts the “system” in the Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System. At least that’s how the US Missile Defense Agency describes the Command and Control, Battle Management, and Communications (C2BMC) element. Basically, C2BMC synchronizes individual missile defense systems, sensors, and operators, which is essential to the layered missile defense approach the agency is working to develop. Since no one system is foolproof, layered system is designed to destroy enemy ballistic missiles by tracking and engaging them in all phases of flight, from boost, mid-course, and terminal phases of ballistic missiles. Tying all that together is a real challenge, since these systems weren’t all designed from the outset to operate together.
Some elements of the USA’s current missile warning and defense architecture include DSP and SBIRS satellites, Aegis BMD ships, Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD), Patriot anti-air missile defense, and Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) batteries, along with flexible dual-use elements like the Patriot PAC-3, other sensors that might be plugged into the network, and other elements that will be developed in future…
What C2BMC Does
The C2BMC system receives, processes, and displays tracking and status data from these elements so that commanders at various locations have the same integrated operating picture and can make coordinated decisions about deploying weapons. This allows the central command structure to use the most effective weapons to engage threat ballistic missiles in all flight phases.
The BMDS C2BMC includes 3 parts: C2, battle management, and communications. Its capabilities [PDF] include:
* Planning capability to locate sensors and weapons systems to counter identified threats;
* Situational awareness;
* Battle management to pair sensors and shooters for BMD asset utilization and engagement;
* Sensor netting to detect, identify, track, and discriminate threats; and
* Communications networks to manage and distribute data.
More than 70 C2BMC workstations are fielded at US Strategic, Northern, European, Pacific, and Central Commands (USSTRATCOM, USNORTHCOM, USEUCOM, USPACOM, and USCENTCOM); numerous Army Air and Missile Defense Commands; Air and Space Operations Centers; and other supporting warfighter organizations.
Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor for C2BMC, with Northrop Grumman serving as the principal subcontractor.
Contracts and Key Events
May 11/17: Northrop Grumman has received a $332 million modification to an existing contract for work at the Joint National Center Research and Development for the Missile Defense Agency and the Department of Defense. Under the terms of the agreement, work to be carried out includes the integration of Ballistic Missile Defense System (BDMS) and testing programs for the program, as well as the provision of logistical services, wargame and readiness exercises, and the development of doctrine, as well as information technology support for the Chief Information Officer for the BDMS. The additional DoD funding will increase the funding maximum from $3.85 billion to $4.18 billion, and may extend task orders until May 2018.
March 14/14: GAO report. The GAO releases GAO-14-248R, regarding the USA’s EPAA plans for defending Europe from ballistic missiles. The report mentions C2BMC, and the news isn’t so good.
C2BMC S6.4 was fielded in 2011 as part of EPAA Phase 1. The issue is S8.2, which is needed to improve the integration of incoming missile tracks for Phase 2, and provides a Lock-On After Launch firing capability for AEGIS BMD systems. It was supposed to be ready in 2015, but current plans now say it won’t be ready until 2017 – and software projects like this are always at risk for further delays. That delay creates follow-on delays for planned improvements to AN/TPY-2 radars.
C2BMC S8.4 has also been changed from its original deployment in 2018 with Phase 3. It’s supposed to provide the ability for AEGIS BMD systems to intercept incoming missiles without using their own radars, thanks to faster integrated tracks, more precise tracking, and resilience in more “complex” conditions. Instead, a 2013 decision by MDA pushed S8.4 to 2020 or later. Phase 3 will now use S8.2x, with unspecified upgrades. That delay creates follow-on delays for planned improvements to AN/TPY-2 radars and THAAD missiles, and AEGIS BMD.
March 4/14: MDA Budget. The MDA finally releases its FY15 budget request, with information spanning from FY 2014 – 2019. C2BMD is slated to receive $2.281 billion over this period based on current plans, and is very consistent at $405 – 466 million per year. The MDA adds:
“In addition to continuing the enhancement of global BMD survivable communications and support for operations and sustainment of C2BMC at fielded sites, in FY 2015 we will integrate Overhead Persistent Infrared data into C2BMC to support cueing of BMD sensors worldwide. We will also improve sensor data integration and battle management in C2BMC to support Aegis BMD cueing and launch-on and engage-on remote capability.”
Sources: US MDA, PB 2015 Appropriation Summary | US MDA, Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 Budget Estimates.
Jan 28/14: DOT&E Testing Report. The Pentagon releases the FY 2013 Annual Report from its Office of the Director, Operational Test & Evaluation (DOT&E). C2BMC is included, and their report focuses on testing of C2BMC S6.4 Maintenance Release 1 and 2 (MR1 and MR2). MR1-2 are focused on “debris mitigation,” helping defensive systems separate the warheads from the chaff.
C2BMC can control and direct 1 AN/TPY-2 radar, and some lab tests have involved more than 1 simulated radar, but that hasn’t been fully tested yet. DOT&E wants the Missile Defense Agency to perform tests with multiple TPY-2s within in a single Area of Regard or theater. They want that single focus in order to test tracking coordination.
In addition, C2BMC experienced “some minor latency issues during stressing test cases with large numbers of threats,” especially if more friendly forces are in theater to add complications. The GTI-04e Part 1 test also found “interoperability and command and control deficiencies… that affected track processing, situational awareness, and battle management.”
Sept 10/13: FTO-1. A successful joint test of AEGIS BMD and land-based THAAD missiles from the Pacific Kwajalein Atoll/Reagan Test Site destroys 2 medium range target missiles.
The test involved full inter-operation. A land-based TPY-2 radar was positioned forward as the warning radar. It acquired the targets, and passed that onto the joint C2BMC system. C2BMC cued DDG 74 USS Decatur, outfitted with AEGIS BMD 3.6.1 and the SM-3 Block IA missile. Decatur acquired the track, then launched the SM-3 and killed its target. C2BMC also passed the track to a land-based THAAD battery’s own TPY-2 radar, which provided the intercept guidance for a successful pair of THAAD missile shots. The 2nd THAAD missile was actually aimed at the SM-3’s MRBM, in case it had failed to achieve intercept, but that turned out not to be necessary this time.
C2BMC has been used in a number of other tests, but this complex test was included as an excellent illustration of the system’s intended capabilities. Sources: US MDA, Sept 10/13 release | Lockheed Martin, Sept 11/13 release | Raytheon, Sept 10/13 release.
March 20/12: Northrop Grumman announces a $96 million follow-on contract as part of Lockheed Martin’s Missile Defense National Team, which is responsible for the C2BMC program. Under the 38-month contract, Northrop Grumman will support integrated product teams, provide engineering expertise, and provide test and exercise support for C2BMC systems.
Dec 23/11: Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Solutions in Gaithersburg, MD receives a sole-source 5-year, $980 million incentive-based, indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract to work with the US Missile Defense Agency to develop C2BMC. Lockheed Martin ISGS will develop, model, fabricate, integrate, test, verify, evaluate, validate, document, deliver, field, train, operate, sustain, and support updates and new capabilities.
Work will be performed in Arlington, VA from Jan 1/12 through Dec 31/16, with initial orders funded from FY 2012 research, development, test and evaluation funds. The US Missile Defense Agency in Huntsville, AL manages the contract (HQ0147-12-D-0003). Lockheed Martin.
Aug 18/10: Northrop Grumman announces that it received from MDA a $90 million, 30-month task order to develop techniques for sensor management and data processing and fusion for future sensors that will be used by the C2BMC system. The company said the techniques will provide more accurate tracking information for intercepting a missile earlier in flight using current and future interceptor systems. These new capabilities will be built on an open systems infrastructure so that any sensor and weapon system can be incorporated into the BMD system, the company said.
April 15/10: Lockheed Martin announces a $424 million 2-year contract modification to beef up the C2BMC system’s security, situational awareness capabilities, and integrate sensors and weapons systems. Work will be conducted in Arlington, VA; Huntsville, AL; and Colorado Springs, CO.
Jan 8/08: Lockheed Martin announces that it received $458 million contract modification in 2007 for development, integration, and installation of the C2BMC capability.
December 2007: Lockheed Martin said C2BMC Spiral 6.2 was promoted to operational status. With this spiral, capabilities provided include Link 16 track, parallel staging of networks for support to development/ integration and operations, new communication capabilities for Aegis UHF/EHF and situational awareness and planner capability enhancements.
* Missile Defense Agency – Command and Control, Battle Management, and Communications. See also PDF handout.
* Lockheed Martin – Command, Control, Battle Management & Communications
* Northrop Grumman – Command, Control, Battle Management and Communications [PDF]
* GlobalSecurity.org – Battle Management, Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence
Some Related Systems
* DID – Serious Dollars for AEGIS Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD). The software and hardware will continue to improve.
* DID – SM-3 BMD, in from the Sea: EPAA & Aegis Ashore. European theater defense.
* DID – THAAD: Reach Out and Touch Ballistic Missiles. System includes TPY-2 radar, which can also deploy independently.