May 1, 2020
By Robert K. Ackerman
Members of the NATO Military Committee are briefed at the NATO Joint Warfare Centre in Norway. The Atlantic alliance is broadening its activities in cybersecurity amid more diverse threats and growing new technologies. Credit: NATO

NATO is doubling down on cyberspace defense with increased partnerships and new technology thrusts. Information exchanges on threats and solutions, coupled with research into exotic capabilities such as artificial intelligence, are part of alliance efforts to secure its own networks and aid allies in the cybersecurity fight.

The threats the alliance networks face constitute relatively the same ones confronting other organizations. NATO faces the double challenge of securing its own networks and information assets, as well as helping its member nations improve their own national cyber resilience.

August 24, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Amatrice, Italy, as seen on August 9, 2010. Image collected by WorldView-2. © European Space Imaging

Shortly after getting word of the deadly earthquake that has devastated much of central Italy, the European Space Imaging's satellite tasking operations team collected the first satellite image of the damage at 10:21 a.m. (UTC).

Comparing the high-resolution satellite image taken on August 9, 2010, viewers clearly see the effects of the earthquake in the town center of Amatrice.

A 6.2-magnitude earthquake hit central Italy on Wednesday about 65 miles northeast of Rome. Many of the dead, which by early evening local time tallied 120, were in the historic town of Amatrice. The mayor reportedly stated that three-quarters of the town was destroyed.

April 3, 2009

The French navy and air force are adding new encryption technology to their identification friend-or-foe (IFF) systems to reduce the chance of enemy interception and analysis. The new encryption is being applied to more than 1,000 IFF systems equipping the two services. The equipment will help ensure that links between aircraft transponders and ground-based interrogators are not read or corrupted by new interception technologies now appearing in the battlespace. The existing IFF systems receiving the encryption upgrades will be able to respond quickly and reliably in an electronic warfighting environment, company officials say.

August 2012
By Adam Baddeley, SIGNAL Magazine


The Star One C1 satellite is one of Brazil’s two main orbital relays for military communications. The equatorial South American country is expanding its use of satellites for communications and other military support functions.

The rising South American power is planning new launches to complement existing systems.

April 2012
By James C. Bussert, SIGNAL Magazine

November 2011
By James C. Bussert, SIGNAL Magazine

A host of paramilitary and civilian organizations populate this unofficial naval force.

The People’s Liberation Army Navy has at its disposal a variety of boats and ships for use in littoral waters. They are organized under separate maritime agencies that carry out specific missions officially similar to their counterparts in other countries. Yet, despite their diverse nature, these vessels together constitute an unofficial fourth fleet for the Middle Kingdom’s navy.

October 1, 2011
By James C. Bussert, SIGNAL Magazine


A Chinese trawler plies the waves in waters off the coast of China. While ostensibly designed for fishing, these trawlers increasingly are carrying out government and military missions against foreign vessels in areas of interest to China.

June 2011
By Rita Boland, SIGNAL Magazine

May 2011
By James C. Bussert, SIGNAL Magazine


Maj. Gen. Wang Junli, PLA (l), Hong Kong military garrison deputy commander, presents a model of China’s new 056 corvette to Hong Kong University Vice-Chancellor Lap-Chee Tsui. The corvette represents a new littoral capability for the PLA Navy.

Advanced ship technologies now will help patrol littoral waters.

June 2010
By Henry S. Kenyon, SIGNAL Magazine


The French army is conducting more mobile operations in remote regions such as Afghanistan. The RITA N4 program will provide battalion-size forces with on-the-halt connectivity to higher-echelon headquarters.

System provides high-bandwidth data services to support rapid mobile operations.

April 2010
By James C. Bussert, SIGNAL Magazine


The 67,000-ton aircraft carrier Varyag, purchased by China after the collapse of the Soviet Union, may serve as a carrier training platform until China commissions its new indigenous carriers, which may take place around 2014.

March 2010
By Adam Baddeley, SIGNAL Magazine

Alliance is implementing an innovative services-based SATCOM strategy to meet future requirements.

NATO is transitioning its satellite communications infrastructure from an ownership- and capability-based “bent pipe” arrangement to a more fluid, service-led approach. The challenge for the alliance now is in making plans and provisions for that new capability, which aims at providing a guaranteed ability to obtain the required services to meet collaborative communications needs in space and on the ground.

November 2009
By Rita Boland


A contractor from Product Manager, Defense Communications Systems–Europe, drills through a maintenance hole for fiber optic conduit and cable.

Warfighters overseas will have access to commercial-grade capabilities for the first time.

July 2009
By Henry S. Kenyon


The Networked Interoperable Real-Time Information Services (NIRIS) enhances commanders' situational awareness and provides military and civilian convoys operating in Afghanistan with real-time alerts to security threats such as improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and potential ambushes along their routes.

June 2009
By James C. Bussert

March 2009
By Adam Baddeley

NATO’s telepresence trial linking Europe with Kabul provided an immersive, face-to-face virtual meeting capability for command staff.
Multinational military leaders employ newest video technology to plan missions and boost service members’ morale.

March 2009
By Robert K. Ackerman

February 2009
By James C. Bussert

Evolutionary introduction of assets leads to different combat capabilities.

February 2009
By Henry S. Kenyon

January 2009
By Henry S. Kenyon

The Joint Live Experiment on Network Enabled Capabilities demonstrated data interoperability between NATO and Swedish military and civilian organizations. The event simulated a national-level event that required information sharing in real time.
Multinational effort focuses on information sharing between civilian and military agencies.

November 2008
By Henry Kenyon

The latest software upgrade of the United Kingdom’s Bowman tactical radio system will provide commanders with enhanced situational awareness, improved battlefield management tools, and battlefield networking and Internet capabilities.
Latest upgrade brings radio system’s key features online.

August 2008
By Adam Baddeley

The Electronic Borders program is intended to extend the U.K.’s awareness of who wants to enter the country beyond its borders, even from nearby countries such as France.
Agencies both contribute to and access data consolidation.

March 2008
By Adam Baddeley

Poland has deployed sizable formations to support operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. These require reach-back capabilities to headquarters in Warsaw, which in turn require satellite connectivity.
New infrastructure to align with NATO avoids duplication of capability.

December 2007
By Henry S. Kenyon

Zephyr is a high-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) designed to
operate as a reconnaissance or communications relay platform. The solar-powered aircraft can remain on station for several days.
High-flying unmanned platform offers possibility of airborne radio relays and long-term sensing.

September 2007
By Henry S. Kenyon

July 2007
By Catherine Imperatore

Four British service members take part in a simulated attack on a village during exercise Lion Sun 2005. The Ministry of Defence Grand Challenge is designed to yield a system that would protect U.K. troops as they conduct urban warfare.
U. K. contest calls on entrants to build the perfect tool to protect British troops.

May 2007
By Henry S. Kenyon

The goal of the Africa Endeavor exercise is to develop interoperability among African nations’ armed forces and to foster a culture of information sharing during multinational operations.
Command and control demonstration creates military cooperation, interaction rarely seen on the continent.

December 2006
By Col. David De Vries, USA; Lt. Col. Charles Wells, USA; and Lt. Col. Dana Steven Tankins, USA

Spc. Damian Fugate, USA, and Spc. Matthew Evans, USA, adjust a Phoenix satellite system dish on Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.
Bandwidth increase serves as precursor to the modern communications battlefield by supporting the deployment of new concepts and equipment.

November 2006
By Henry S. Kenyon

The MRC-200 Tactical Repeater System is designed to extend the range of modern multiband handheld radios. The repeater is manportable, but it also can be installed in vehicles for mobile operations.
Tactical system is designed to support modern multiband equipment.

October 2006
by Henry S. Kenyon

October 2006
By Henry S. Kenyon

August 2006
By Adam Baddeley

The U.S. Army International Technology Center–Atlantic (USAITC-A) is leveraging technologies from Europe that can be quickly transitioned to support operations as part of the global war on terrorism. Its most recent focus is on capabilities that can counter improvised explosive devices.
U.S. Army technology center fosters communications equipment integration.

June 2006
By Henry S. Kenyon

The scenario for Multinational Experiment 4 (MNE4) focused on ongoing operations in Afghanistan. It is the goal of MNE4 to develop new strategies that can be applied to peacekeeping and stability efforts in many parts of the world.
Multinational tests examine ways to win wars by building bridges, not destroying them.

May 2006
By Adam Baddeley

Initially focused on ground operations, Sweden’s network-based defense approach and software-defined radio (SDR) program will embrace and integrate land, sea and air, including the Gripen, within a joint network concept. Where available, space platforms also will support networking.
Transnational effort focuses on international interoperability to contribute in coalition environments.

April 2006
By Adam Baddeley

Thirty-seven new tri-band tactical terminals, recently tested in NATO Response Force exercises, will support X-band military satellite communications and C- and Ku-band communications from commercial satellites.
Multinational cooperation extends capabilities.

April 2006
By James C. Bussert

Missions seem ambiguous, but preparations for opposed combat landings are not.

March 2006
By Adam Baddeley

Although Italy is involved in the Multifunction Information Distribution System Joint Tactical Radio System program to equip airborne platforms, problems have arisen over issues of software encryption.
National team is developing first prototype and planning for a system that allows portability on various platforms.

November 2005
By Henry S. Kenyon

September 2005
By Henry S. Kenyon

July 2005
By James C. Bussert

China’s new DDG 170 guided missile destroyer features Aegis-type phased array antennas and a ship-to-ship missile control Bandstand radome dominating the bridge. The ship’s numerous foreign weapons and new radomes hint at the complexity of its electronic functions.
A coastal force extends its reach and capabilities.

June 2005
By James C. Bussert

Exercises to rapidly deploy or preposition U.S. minesweepers to Taiwan could deter such activity.

The People’s Republic of China is building the necessary infrastructure to mine the ports of Taiwan should military conflict break out between the two governments. This capability would give China an effective blockade ability without the risk of escalation that would emerge from a direct military confrontation with the United States.

February 2001
By Henrik Friman

Researchers study social dynamics of successful communication in a high-technology, high-stress environment for clues to sound joint battlefield decision making.

Future military command centers may take the form of distributed networks if ongoing research by scientists bears fruit. One new project already has been adapted by the Swedish armed forces and will be partially implemented in its new operational command post.

January 1999
By Clarence A. Robinson, Jr.

Digital transmission and switching systems gain market foothold, expand to export markets, joint developments.

Central Europe’s efforts to open the economy to free enterprise are dramatically affecting the electronics and telecommunications industries. Nowhere is the emerging response to free competition more crisp than in the Czech Republic. There, new commercial and military communications system advances are stimulating rapid domestic and export growth.

February 1999
By Mark H. Kagan

Laser-guided weapon also would provide antihelicopter capability.

Israel is developing a laser-guided antitank/antihelicopter missile that will be fired out of tank guns instead of from missile launchers.  In its antihelicopter role, the missile would enable tanks to defend themselves against fast-moving helicopters that can fire antitank missiles from beyond the effective range of conventional tank gun projectiles or onboard machine guns.

February 1999
By James C. Bussert

But when it comes to front-line aircraft, imported systems still reign supreme.

The People’s Republic of China is grappling with an inherent conflict of relying on imported avionics technology while pressing to develop a state-of-the-art domestic manufacturing base. The country continues its long-term commitment to advanced avionics research and development both for internal use and for export, and foreign technology is one source feeding that endeavor.