Upgrading Military's Nuclear Communications Is An Uphill Task

Upgrading Military’s Nuclear Communications Is An Uphill Task

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According to brand new reports that were released on Capitol Hill on Thursday, the case has been made when it comes to investments worth billions of dollars regarding the nuclear command of the nation, including control as well as the communications network called NC3.

The report has been produced by the MITRE Corporation, in collaboration with the Mitchell Institute of the Air Force. It has cautioned that though the U.S has invested in an advanced crop of nuclear-based missiles, bombers and submarines, there can be a potential lack of nuclear deterrents that can be deemed credible if the nation fails to possess nuclear command as well as control systems which provide ‘no fail’ channels of communication to the nuclear-centric forces. This entire scenario has been talked about in the context of a possible, future environment which might include never-seen-before threats as well as challenges.

William LaPlante, who serves as the senior vice president at MITRE has been primarily involved in writing the report and has said that the NC3 system works fine today but needs to be able to transform into a new architectural system so that it may be potentially integrated with modern nuclear platforms being developed by the Pentagon, including the likes of Columbia-class submarine boasting of ballistic missiles as well as the stealth bomber coded B-21. Essentially, the problem lies with these being ultra-modern weapon systems of the 21st century while NC3 is still using 1970-based technology.

The NC3’s system already includes warning radars and satellites; aircraft, communications satellites as well as ground stations; mobile and fixed command posts; and lastly, control centers required to monitor nuclear systems. According to the report, the communications satellites and the early warning ones supporting NC3 system may be rendered vulnerable to interference and electronic attacks. The 1970s-based classic DSP satellites are expected to be defunct in the coming few years. The latest SBIRS satellites are considered to be more advanced. However, the Pentagon is worried that these may be targeted by the use of counter-space weapons.