Experimental gaming for Command, Control and Communications

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Sovereign, Michael G.
Stewart, Joseph S., II
Date of Issue
Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School
A series of annual experiments in Command, Control and Communications have been held at NPS over the last three years. These experiments have been sponsored by the Defense Communications Agency under the auspices of the Joint Directors of Laboratories C3 Basic research program. These experiments have used a computer-aided wargame and a large number of players to provide data for investigation of C3 issues which are of broad interest to the community. This paper describes those experiments, details the data gathering methods of the most recent experiment, and provides an introduction to the results obtained when the Headquarters Evaluation and Assessment Tool (HEAT) methodology developed by Defense Systems Incorporated (DSI) is applied. DSI has supported the experiments and analyzed the data in each year. A comprehensive summary of their work is [1]. The issues addressed to date include connectivity, centralization and command role. The data for each experiment include thousands of observations gathered through a month of experimentation representing several thousand officer subject hours in realistic battle command situations. For each of the experiments in the series a consensus was reached by the three participating organizations, DCA, DSI and NPS as to the specific subject which would be investigated. In general the investigations concerned command and control structures and their performance, how these structures might be modified by design, or how they might change during the course of a series of stressful events. A constraint was that the computer laboratory environment would allow the games to be replicated, and that resultant data from a series of iterations would support statistical analysis. During the series of experiments it was found that the team was able to present realistic problems using the wargaming system, that the subjects (who were officer-students ) made reasonably effective decisions, and that a series of short gaming events produced data which could be analyzed statistically. In addition, the experiments could be controlled to reduce the effects of learning and to explore minor changes in the command and control system architecture which was being simulated. The wargame (hardware and software) used is the Navy' s Interim Battle-Group Tactical Trainer (IBGTT) developed by the Naval Ocean Systems Center and currently in use by the Tactical Training Group, Pacific. Generalization from these results is of course dangerous, but a continuity of results over a considerable scale (one to four carrier groups) and range of scenarios has been shown (Sea of Japan, Persian Gulf and Norwegian Sea.)
Conference Paper
9th MIT/ONR Workshop on C3 systems
Series/Report No
Other Units
Naval Postgraduate School (U.S.)
NPS Report Number
Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Distribution Statement
This publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.