NATO M&S COE at the CWIX Exercise 2017

The NATO Modelling & Simulation (M&S) Centre of Excellence (COE) successfully led the  M&S Focus Area (FA) at the Coalition Warrior Interoperability eXploration, eXperimentation, eXamination, eXercise (CWIX) from 12 to 29 of June 2017.

The NATO M&S COE was responsible for coordinating the execution of interoperability tests, avoiding conflicts and overlapping of concurrent activities and maximizing the tests’ execution performance.

The M&S FA attracted multiple simulation systems from 11 Nations/Organizations, including Canada, France, Germany, Hungary, United States, Norway, Great Britain, the Joint Multinational Simulation Centre (JMSC), the NATO Joint Force Training Center (JFTC), the NATO Joint Warfare Center (JWC) and the NATO M&S CoE itself.

The objectives for the M&S FA were defined as below:

  1. Federate different networked simulation systems building a complex federation facilitated by NATO Modelling and Simulation Group MSG-134’s Integration, Verification and Certification Tool and associated processes.
  2. Provide simulation services both inside and outside the FA according to NATO Modelling and Simulation Group MSG-136’s Modelling and Simulation as a Service paradigm and architecture.
  3. Stimulate real C2 Systems by actively supporting the Joint Vignette.

The M&S FA established and managed a complex federation among the participating simulation systems, composed of different subnets based on both the Distributed Interactive Simulation (DIS) and High Level Architecture standards (HLA).

The main challenge during the exercise was to configure each simulation system to provide and consume simulated entities for other participants. This was due to a number of different Federated Object Models (FOMs), communication protocols, message formats and entity type mappings and databases alignments.

The tests proved the interoperability, flexibility and adaptability of M&S capabilities, and particularly their ability to interoperate among the simulations and with the Command & Control (C2) systems, in spite of the different format/protocols.

The M&S systems provided extensive simulation services to a wide range of Partners. Through the success of these interoperability test cases with C2 systems, the M&S FA proved simulation services can support the Commanders’ and Staffs’ training during exercises, their decision making during the operations, or the prediction, experimentation and development of new concepts of operations, doctrines and procedures.

Despite the fact that the CWIX 2017 objectives were quite ambitious, the M&S FA demonstrated its ability to fully accomplish them. This means that there is room for more challenging objectives in the next CWIX.