Security Information To The Tactical Edge



Armor & Mobility had the pleasure of speaking with Mr. William Cannon, Director, Electronics & Communications (EC) Business Unit, Advatech Pacific, a provider of advanced engineering solutions to the aerospace and defense markets. 

By Tactical Defense Media 

Mr. Cannon discussed the capabilities of Advatech Pacific’s Tactical Cross-Domain Solution (TACDS™) which enables the automated exchange of tactical information between security domains and is specifically designed to meet the unique needs of warfighters at the Tactical Edge. Built on the CyberGuard™ Core, TACDS™ provides a low cost, small Size, Weight, and Power (SWaP), rugged, tamper-resistant cross domain solution that is ideal for tactical vehicles, mobile shelters, ground sensor systems and aircraft.

A&M: Why is CDS needed on today’s battlefield?

Mr. Cannon: In today’s increasingly connected battle space, instant information sharing is a necessity. For such systems, a cross domain solution (CDS) is a key enabling technology. A CDS allows selective, assured communication between networks of different levels of security by controlling the data flowing between the two networks. A high quality CDS does this by content aware inspection of the data, passing the data items unchanged, sanitizing individual items, or blocking the data flow entirely, according to a pre-specified security policy rule set.

As mobile devices become an essential part of the warfighter’s kit, the need for network connectivity extends down to the individual soldier. At the tactical edge, a CDS must not only protect sensitive systems from cyber threats, but it must also protect itself from compromise in the event that it falls into adversary hands.

A&M: Speak to software capabilities within CDS.

Mr. Cannon: TACDS™ is Advatech Pacific’s rugged, low SWaP, tactical CDS for use on military ground, airborne, and maritime vehicles. It delivers secure, robust, bi-directional filtering and validation of tactical data transfers including common operating picture, full motion video, sensor feeds and control, and health and usage data. TACDS™ has been fully qualified to military environmental, EMI, and power standards. In addition, it is NSA certified and on the Unified Cross Domain Services Management Office (UCDSMO) baseline Control List (UCL).

A&M: If not currently fielded, is there testing and/or contract bidding expected?

Mr. Cannon: Advatech Pacific’s Tactical Cross Domain Solution (TACDS™) is currently in the process of being fielded by the Canadian Department of National Defense (DND) on several of their tactical ground and air vehicles. It is also being fielded on a UAV platform. TACDS™ has been selected for use on several U.S. DoD programs of record including ground combat vehicles, ISR sensor systems, and rotary wing aircraft.

We have many more evaluation efforts on-going by various Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Special Operations Command systems/platforms and expect more programs of record to adopt TACDS™ for their tactical Cross Domain Solution (CDS) requirements. Several bids/quotes are currently in process or awaiting award. The latest version of the TACDS™ is currently undergoing recertification testing with the Unified Cross Domain Services Management Office (UCDSMO) with enhanced capabilities and several new filters.

The unit has been tested to MIL-STD 810G, 461F, 1275D, and 704E for ground and air vehicle environments. It has also been successfully evaluated at several of the U.S. Army’s Network Integration Evaluation (NIE12.2 and 13.1), Joint Users Interoperability Communications Exercise (JUICE-2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016) and Command, Control, Communication, Joint Users Interoperability Communications Exercise (C4ISR) exercises as well as a Canadian DND demonstration for the Tactical Armored Patrol Vehicle (TAPV).