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Military Base of the Future Webinar – Q&A

Military Base of the Future Webinar – Q&A

  • Answering Your Smart Base of the Future Questions

The smart military base of the future was the subject of a well-attended webcast in February, hosted by Norm Balchunas, Sr. Director, Digital Defense, for Honeywell Aerospace. Balchunas covered a wide range of topics and discussed some of the ways Honeywell is applying advanced data analytics, artificial intelligence and the Industrial Internet of Things to help military services improve readiness, security, safety, and efficiency. A replay of the webcast is now available. In this article, Balchunas tackles some of the questions raised by webcast participants after the session.

It’s a given that military bases will become more connected over the next decade. Shouldn’t we be more concerned about cybersecurity in an age when someone could compromise operations with a $2.50 flash drive?

It’s impossible to overstate the emphasis we all must place on cybersecurity as the armed forces increase their use of smart, connected technologies to improve safety, energy efficiency and mission effectiveness. The services have invested heavily in cybersecurity and suppliers like Honeywell are dedicated to ensuring that security is top-of-mind in everything we do.

Customers in many industries choose Honeywell to help develop and assess their cybersecurity initiatives using our unique data-driven analytics platform, Honeywell Forge. Cybersecurity is one of the Honeywell Forge focus areas, along with aerospace, industrial, buildings and workers. Each of these areas is relevant to the military services as they strive to improve base operations.

Moving data securely and seamlessly is a necessity. Honeywell has developed secure flash drives that are already being used in critical plants and factories and by national agencies and are being introduced in the aerospace world. We pioneered wireless data gateways to move data on and off aircraft and other assets. We’re also on the leading edge in developing and applying intrusion detection and prevention capabilities to monitor, detect and respond to known cybersecurity threats.

Are there any Honeywell solutions for command posts that require C6ISR (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Cyber-Defense, Combat Systems, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance) to be integrated real-time across multiple domains? 

Honeywell is moving forward within the Mosaic Warfare program, which is being managed by DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Mosaic Warfare will implement new networks, manned-unmanned teaming and cognitive electronic warfare strategies across domains. We’re also leveraging our development, security, and operations (DevSecOps) capabilities to help modernize software for C6ISR programs, to include commercial-off-the-shelf open architecture solutions.

Our unique C6ISR “single pane of glass” common operating picture provides a clear and concurrent view of critical information to military commanders and personnel on the ground, in the air and at sea. This common operating picture is fully coordinated with the operations center and HQ elements. The result is more effective and reliable communications and faster, better-informed decision-making at every level.

Honeywell’s approach enables information to flow securely in all directions. Cybersecurity is a prime consideration as Honeywell’s integrated solution draws data from multiple sources including radar, aircraft, ships and other assets. 

Can aircraft defects be connected for dispositioning of repairs? Will technicians be able to have access to a history of defects on the cloud?

The beauty of a fully enabled cloud-based analytics solution is being able to predict failures down to the component level and determine operational limiting factors, maintenance and worker impacts at any time.

Connected maintenance gives technicians an unprecedented level of information and insights about the performance and health of aircraft systems. Intelligent and self-learning maintenance systems monitor onboard systems, model nominal behavior, detect aberrations and analyze data and patterns from past events to predict that a fault will occur days in advance. Then, the system recommends corrective actions and alerts the logistics chain to order the right parts and materials.

Any idea on the cost of implementing a base of the future solution?

There are many variables, of course, including the size, population, location, and mission of a particular base. Budget remains a challenge, but in the next decade I think we’ll see the services building new hospitals, dormitories, and base housing, and upgrading buildings constructed in the 70s or even longer ago to make them smarter, more secure and more energy-efficient.

There’s very little cost difference between constructing a conventional building and a smart building. The real value is that a smart ecosystem is considerably cheaper to operate over the expected lifetime of a building, so a smart building can more than pay for itself over time with energy and operating cost savings.

A smart base becomes more mission-effective, too, because the improved ecosystem for command and control lets commanders access and use all available data to improve the decision-making process in such areas as operations, maintenance, and logistics. It’s a winning formula all around!

Norm Balchunas
Senior Director for Defense and Cybersecurity
Norm Balchunas is the Senior Director for Defense and Cybersecurity with Honeywell Aerospace. He's a retired U.S. Air Force officer.


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