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BACN (Battlefield Airborne Communication Node)

 
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BACN (Battlefield Airborne Communication Node) - 9/23/2020 8:23:48 PM   
jkgarner

 

Posts: 79
Joined: 4/30/2020
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This is a question for the devs and experienced data builders:

Modern battlefields are networked together. Line-of-sight constraints may not apply if you have that 'eye-in-the-sky' , no this is not Skynet, nor satellites, but something like a battle-field Wi-Fi.

Northrop Grumman developed BACN (pronounced "bacon")or Battlefield Airborne Communications Node, and the US has deployed it. Some NATO countries are looking into it.

If you like, you can read up about it at the public Air Force page: https://www.acc.af.mil/About-Us/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/2241383/battlefield-airborne-communications-node-bacn/

This has been in play in the middle east since 2009, with several platforms coming on-line since then.

The E-11A is the manned airplane that carried the node. (The first was a A Bombardier DB-700 Global Express, converted by Northrop Grumman in under 9 months, later versions are Bombardier Global 6000 business jets begin converted. They typically have a Service ceiling of 51000 feet, and range of over 67000 nm, allowing a long loiter time over an area.

The E-Q4B is the unmanned airplane that carries the node. These are repurposed RQ-4C's, unmanned areal vehicles. Service range of 60,000 feet and similar range.

What they do is serve as a comm node between ground, navel, air and space systems. Message traffic in the systems is automatically translated to and from the receiveers, so existing systems 'talk natively' to the BACN.

So the big question... how do we model this capability in Command?
--I am working with a Pro edition, so I can modify the database and add the AC and its attributes as ended.

First: what aircraft type should I use? I am thinking Airborne Control is closest. Wile this is not an exact match, nothing else really fits.

Second: how do I get it to participate in the communications networks? Do I add comms? sensors? weapons/loadouts?

The big thing is this system allows targeting and working with targets that are not line-of-site. e.g. target a ground unit that sits on the other side of the mountain from my position. My system is LOS to the BACN, loitering above, and the target is LOS to the BACN as well... I get targeting data from the BACN to set my firing solution. BOOM: target hit.

ON a side note... once I have my aircraft record complete, how do I get an image to display in the DB display? I did not see where to link an image in the editor.
Post #: 1
RE: BACN (Battlefield Airborne Communication Node) - 9/23/2020 9:51:12 PM   
TheOttoman

 

Posts: 138
Joined: 12/14/2017
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I don't have PE, so YMMV.

I think that if you wanted to model this properly, it would be with datalinks, and create a comms package on each of the appropriate platforms. That way you could model a situ where for example, you have an asset in a mountainous valley with BACN contact another platform orbiting (say a UAV) with BACN and another datalink and provide targeting information to a third asset (say a B-1) w/o BACN.

How you would go about doing all of this? Yeah, with my limited knowledge I'd say build out comms entries in the database, but I don't know how the datalinks are modeled well enough to understand how the UAV in my example routes from BACN to the Comms/Datalink that it shares with the B-1.

I was looking at that with some of the U-2 sensors that were deployed during Desert Shield and Desert Storm, and how they were communicated to the ground station. The way Command inherently models sensors (which admittedly is different than targeting), it makes the need for a strategic asset downlink comms, like the U-2, unnecessary to show.

As to how you get the photos, you put them in \..\..\Command...\DB\Images\CWDB -or- DB3000\Aircraft_DBID#.jpg

(in reply to jkgarner)
Post #: 2
RE: BACN (Battlefield Airborne Communication Node) - 9/24/2020 5:57:22 AM   
KnightHawk75

 

Posts: 689
Joined: 11/15/2018
Status: offline
I know they are for distance\range, and jamming, but are certain comm-links actually modeled for LOS in CMO? Never seemed to me that they are at least in the non-pe version?

(in reply to TheOttoman)
Post #: 3
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