DOD makes its net-centric plan global

John Osterholz

Olivier Douliery

The Defense Department continued its uphill march toward a network-centric enterprise this month when Defense CIO John Stenbit signed off on a second-generation plan for the Global Information Grid.

Version 2.0 of GIG extends the systems architecture beyond the Central Command to the Northern Command and Combined Forces Korea.

Version 1.0 covered only operations of the Central Command 'and was not a net-centric architecture,' said John Osterholz, director of architecture and interoperability in the CIO's office.

'The architecture portrays a scenario by which operations and warfare can change and meet the increasingly ambiguous environment that our operators are confronted with,' Osterholz said. 'This version of the GIG architecture provides for the integration of the Business Enterprise Architecture in the broader context of business systems and warfighting.'

The latest version also incorporates what DOD learned during military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, said Osterholz, who oversees development of the enterprise architecture.

Through GIG, DOD plans to connect a broad array of Defense networks, securely linking everything from sensors to satellites. It issued the first version in 2001.

The department expects to complete all of the GIG layers, including communications and applications, over the next seven years. Tightly integrated IP communications will be a key component, Osterholz said.

Version 2.0 includes 'direct access of intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and strategic weapons platforms by tactical units, increased services to platforms on the move, cooperative use of tactical sensor data across service lines and use of tactical units as reporting sensors,' Osterholz said.

Stenbit's approval of this version means that all Defense organizations must ensure their IT and security systems acquisitions comply with the GIG architecture.

Everyone's in the act

This includes the Army's Future Combat Systems, Navy's ForceNet, and DOD's Transformational Communications System and business enterprise architecture.

'The GIG architecture contains an operational view, which describes what is different about network-centric operations; a systems view, which integrates major systems end to end; and a technical view, which contains the largely commercial set of standards needed for procurement of net-centric capabilities,' Osterholz said.

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