July 2004 
Volume 03, Issue 3 
Special Features

The big picture

The Big Picture By now, most Boeing people have run across the term network-centric operations and may know this much: It's about creating a network that links people, hardware and assets to enable the right information to get to the right people at the right time so that they can make the right decisions.

Military analysts and academics have identified networkcentric operations as the wave of the future for the U.S. Department of Defense and for any defense contractor, such as Boeing, that wants to get its share of new business. There are also civil applications of NCO in areas like Air Traffic Management and Homeland Security.



Boeing's simulation network: building a battle-theater solution

Boeing’s simulation networkOne way to determine how the customer would utilize networkcentric operations solutions is to perform simulations and try out various scenarios to see what would happen in an NCO environment. Boeing has in place and plans to improve a broad-based modeling, simulation and analysis capability that Mike Heinz, vice president of Integrated Defense Advanced systems (IDeAS), has described as "world class."

"Modeling, simulation and analysis is extremely important and will become even more important in the future with a networked system of systems," Heinz said. "We have some really world-class simulation facilities and capabilities that are all connected through a system called Lab Net. What we want to do is upgrade this system so all of our facilities become nodes that can be part of an ad hoc operational network environment, just like the real operational environment."



NCO goes commercialNCO goes commercial

Mention network-centric operations and Boeing in the same sentence, and you'll likely be talking about future military applications. But there are NCO opportunities in commercial and general aviation as well-particularly in the area of air traffic management (ATM).

The aim of ATM is to provide a network of precise information about system performance, aircraft intent, weather and other facts to improve the capacity and efficiency of the National Airspace System and offer inherent security enhancements.



Platforms, meet the NCO environment

Platforms, meet the NCO environmentSophisticated battlespace programs are driving Boeing's ability to upgrade legacy, or platform, systems to operate in a networkcentric operations environment.

Boeing-produced legacy systems comprise about 60 percent of the U.S. military platforms and weapons systems. As such, Boeing is in good position to upgrade these systems to operate in the future Department of Defense network because the Boeing-developed Strategic Architecture Reference Model (SARM) is designed to ensure that all Boeing systems can share data and communicate with one another, or interoperate.





NCO to play big role in Homeland Security

Homeland security is emerging as a significant market for Boeing’s network-centric operations solutions, second only to the U.S. Department of Defense.

Indeed, Boeing sees homeland security as a growth area with an addressable market of $4 billion to $6 billion a year from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security alone




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