C4ISR Architecture Framework

Keywords architecture architecture framework C4ISR

This report presents Version 2.0 of the Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) Architecture Framework for the development and presentation of architectures. The Framework provides the rules, guidance, and product descriptions for developing and presenting architecture descriptions that ensure a common denominator for understanding, comparing, and integrating architectures. The application of the Framework will enable architectures to contribute most effectively to building interoperable and costeffective military systems. Architectures provide a mechanism for understanding and managing complexity. The purpose of C4ISR architectures is to improve capabilities by enabling the quick synthesis of “go-to-war” requirements with sound investments leading to the rapid employment of improved operational capabilities, and enabling the efficient engineering of warrior systems. The ability to compare, analyze, and integrate architectures developed by the geographical and functional, unified Commands, Military Services, and Defense Agencies (hereinafter also referred to as Commands, Services, and Agencies, or C/S/As) from a cross-organizational perspective is critical to achieving these objectives.

The C4ISR Architecture Framework is intended to ensure that the architecture descriptions developed by the Commands, Services, and Agencies are interrelatable between and among each organization’s operational, systems, and technical architecture views, and are comparable and integratable across Joint and combined organizational boundaries. This version of the Framework builds on Version 1.0 by specifying an enriched set of products with comparable information content, a data model for representing that information content, and the consistent use of terminology.

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Department of Defense. The individual Commands, Services, and Agencies in DoD traditionally developed their C4ISR architectures using techniques, vocabularies, and presentation schemes that suited their unique needs and purposes. In recent years, National Military Strategy has placed a clearly increasing focus on Joint and multi-national military operations. Moreover, resource reductions and government-wide streamlining and downsizing initiatives have placed a premium on finding opportunities for cross-organization leveraging, increased collaboration, and redefined ways of doing business. Architectures provide a framework for finding these opportunities. In October 1995, the Deputy Secretary of Defense directed that a DoD-wide effort be undertaken “... to define and develop better means and processes for ensuring that C4I capabilities meet the needs of warfighters.”

To accomplish this goal, the C4ISR Integration Task Force (ITF) was established under the direction of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence (ASD [C3I]). This task force, consisting of representatives from the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the military Services, and DoD Agencies, organized itself into sets of panels and subpanels, each charged with tackling a different aspect of the problem. The Integrated Architectures Panel (IAP) of the ITF provided the foundation for the first version of the Framework by defining three related architecture types: operational, systems, and technical. The C4ISR Architecture Framework, Version 1.0, dated 7 June 1996, was developed as a product of the IAP, and was endorsed by the ITF. This initial development of a common approach built upon other architecture efforts within the DoD, as shown in figure 1-1, capitalizing on many of their concepts and ideas.

Version 1.0 was intended to provide a basis from which the community could work collectively to evolve and mature architecture development concepts and promulgate them as DoD direction via appropriate DoD policy directives and guidance instructions.

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