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.

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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.