News: Visitors get a glimpse of NIE
Story by Sgt. 1st Class Lori Kuczmanski
WHITE SANDS MISSILE RANGE, N.M. - More than 30 distinguished visitors came out to the west desert to observe soldiers in action as they put adapting equipment to the test in austere conditions during the fifth Network Integration Evaluation, or NIE 13.2, May 11 at White Sands Missile Range, N.M.
Visitors attended a demonstration of various types of equipment being fielded and evaluated to the armed forces. The first stop was the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, Tactical Operations Center, or TOC, where they were met by Col. Thomas Dorame, brigade commander, followed by the final stop at 1st Battalion, 35th Armor Regiment, led by Lt. Col. Roman Cantu.
The overarching goal of DV day was to highlight the events of NIE 13.2, giving an assessment of the capabilities the Army is trying to get in the hands of soldiers faster.
Some key visitors included White Sands Missile Range commanding general, Brig. Gen. Gwen Bingham; Brig. Gen. Cedric Wins, director, Requirements Integration Directorate, Army Capabilities Integration Center, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command; Col. Carlos Walker, chief, LandWarNet Division, Army Capabilities Integration Center, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command; William Gang, civilian aide to the Secretary of the Army; and Dr. Benjamin Flores, dean of the Graduate School, University of Texas at El Paso.
Nearly 3,800 soldiers in 2-1 AD execute realistic tactical operations in the impoverished stretch of sand called a desert, while providing Soldier feedback on the tactical network and other equipment under tough, realistic conditions against the adaptive thinking enemy.
NIE 13.2 stretches from Fort Bliss to Oscura, N.M. The overall training range consists of 2.2 million acres, a training range equivalent to the size of the state of Connecticut.
Lt. Col. Keith Taylor, product manager, Capabilities Package Integration, Systems of Systems Integration Directorate, demonstrated sending and receiving text messages while using Joint Battle Command-Platform, or JBC-P, in a Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle, or MRAP.
“We were able to get in the MRAP and see how JBC-P functions,” said Taylor.
JBC-P allows information—such as text messages, to be quickly passed among forces while creating situational awareness to increase the flow of information. The JBC-P also assists in mission planning and preparation (orders, overlays and digital rehearsals).
Visitors toured the brigade TOC in full combat operation, giving them a glimpse of the network being used as soldiers were out on missions. Dorame gave the visitors an operational overview of what the brigade does to prepare for NIE in addition to their regular soldier tasks.
“During DV day it is a privilege to highlight the 2nd Brigade Combat Team and its role in the Army's Modernization Strategy. This is certainly one of the most critical initiatives for the Army and it is great to demonstrate the capability of our soldiers through this process. It truly demonstrates the importance of the Army's decision to commit a highly trained brigade combat team as part of this effort—an investment in the Army's future,” said Dorame.
Dorame said it is beneficial to have foreign officers see the advanced equipment the Army is fielding for our service members.
“It also demonstrates where the U.S. Army is going and the future capability we are pursuing, allowing them to review their own modernization programs and strategy to ensure that as partners we are maintaining the ability to operate effectively in a multinational environment on the modern battlefield,” said Dorame.