Goldfein: Hanscom key to multi-domain command and control

  • Published
  • By Patty Welsh
  • 66th Air Base Group Public Affairs

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein emphasized that Hanscom’s very important to one of his main focus areas, multi-domain command and control, during an all-call at the base March 30.

“Hanscom is the center of mass for multi-domain command and control,” he said.

Regarding the multi-domain construct, he said there are six domains: air, land, space, sea, cyber and undersea. Volumes of data are created, and it’s the Air Force’s job to take that data and turn it into common operational pictures, enabling leaders to make decisions to create effects the enemy can never match, while denying the enemy the chance to do the same. And if a portion of a domain is taken away or denied, there are other capabilities available from the other domains.

“How do we stitch together those domains?” Goldfein asked. “How do we take one and one to make three?”

To be able to do all this at the speed of future warfare, he said we must think through how we share data, create that common operational picture in an ever-changing environment, and do it a rate that outpaces any adversary and therefore becomes a deterrent unto itself.

Goldfein explained that the Air Force must move beyond discussions of platforms and hardware and begin to focus on the networks they operate in. If the Air Force can do that, it will produce effects no enemy on the planet can counter.

“We need to look at what the apps and the apertures ride on,” he said. “That connective tissue, that common architecture, enterprise-wide architecture will define future warfare at the speed we’re going to have to operate at in this global chess match.”

The Chief also emphasized the need for rapid acquisition, saying that in the past the Air Force often procured systems, then connected them. But in the future, it needs to be in reverse.

“It’s the connective tissue that matters,” he said. “This is where you are center of mass in helping us think through how we’ll get that common operating system to allow data to transition and how’ll we’ll take third offset tools, such as artificial intelligence, machine-to-machine, human-to-machine tools to create multi-domain command and control, and change the way we think about rapid acquisition of the future.”

Goldfein said the Air Force is the service to take this on because it’s already the way the service operates, using a combat search and rescue mission as an example.

“Multi-domain, network, all choreographed - I would submit to you that we are the service to help think through this for the joint force as a member of the joint team,” he said. “And you, right here at Hanscom, are going to lead this effort as we go forward, because the attributes of future conflict I described will define our preparations.”