The US Air Force (USAF) has leveraged Persistent Systems’ Wave Relay mobile ad hoc networking (MANET) technology for its Agile Combat Employment (ACE) concept demonstration.

The ACE is a combat concept that allows the USAF to ensure agility, deterrence and resiliency in a contested environment.

The concept seeks to move to smaller, rapidly deployable, temporary airstrips supported by a limited number of crew members during conflict with near-peer power.

Persistent Air Force and C4ISR business development director Todd Grant said: “Normally, you would have hundreds of people on a large airforce base to support a squadron of fighter jets.

“With ACE, you get the same capability from a smaller, harder-to-target footprint that moves.”

Persistent’s MANET technology is designed to maximise connectivity and communication performance by rapidly adapting to fluctuations in terrain and tough environmental conditions.

According to the company, the mobile ad hoc network meets the requirements of the USAF ACE concept by providing the required capabilities to support expeditionary air bases at a low cost.

Persistent Air Force, intelligence community, and department of energy programmes business development VP Adrien Robenhymer said: “That’s what we have shown with our Wave Relay MANET during this recent demonstration.

“We connected geographically dispersed units at different military bases, providing users with direct communication, situational awareness, full-motion video, and audio.”

During the demonstration, the company also showcased automated primary, alternate, contingency and emergency (PACE) communications in the event of non-availability of a beyond-line-of-sight capability.

The PACE communications were relayed through satellite, internet, 5G cellular, and local area network.

The real-life capabilities demonstrated with ACE will be integrated with future Advanced Battle Management System work in future, noted the company.