A Closer Look at Project Convergence and its Impact on Army Decision-Making

Project Convergence
Luke Travisano, engineer with Robotic Research LLC, conducts a test run of the autonomous system Pegasus, during the Project Convergence capstone event at Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona, Aug. 11 – Sept. 18, 2020. Project Convergence is the Army’s campaign of learning to aggressively advance solutions in the areas of people, weapons systems, command and control, information, and terrain; and integrate the Army’s contributions to Joint All Domain Operations. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Carlos Cuebas Fantauzzi, 22nd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment)

Just a few weeks ago, critical demonstrations supporting the Army’s Project Convergence initiative took place showcasing the importance of agility across domains and the technology necessary to enable that agility. According to the Army Futures Command, “Project Convergence is a campaign of learning to aggressively pursue an Artificial Intelligence and machine learning-enabled battlefield management system” and strive to push forward a key component of the Army Modernization Strategy: becoming a multi-domain force by 2035.

Project Convergence exercises explore how different technologies can be effectively applied in-theater to expedite the decision-making process for warfighters. This priority is front and center for the defense community as adversarial threats become more sophisticated and technologically advanced. In any contested environment, speed to intel rules the day.

To share more about Project Convergence and its progress, Modern Integrated Warfare compiled an overview of industry coverage of the initiative focusing on different takeaways and highlights of the recent demonstrations and the path forward:

Project Convergence Aims to Accelerate Change in Modernization Efforts

Preceding the demonstrations in late September, the Army shared a thorough overview of Project Convergence, its goals, and how it’s aiming to move the needle across multiple domains for the Army. The multi-platform initiative is focused on disseminating critical intel and data across all domains of the battlespace in seconds with its robust and resilient network, allowing warfighters to make crucial decisions quickly and with the information they need. From low-earth orbit satellites to AI and machine learning, Project Convergence aims to increase soldier lethality through the interoperability of modern battlefield technology supported by a novel networked environment.

“The initiative centers around five core elements: people, command and control, weapons systems, terrain, and information,” Joseph Lacdan of the Army News Service reported. “Convergence, a core tenet of the multi-domain operations concept, combines development efforts across each element of the joint force from the tactical to strategic level to achieve greater lethality.”

Read more about the initiative’s goals and methodology here.

Flooding the Zone: Future Aviation Capability Tightens Kill Chain at Project Convergence

Jen Judson at Breaking Defense reported on the Project Convergence demonstration at Yuma Proving Ground, AZ, and looked closely at how the learning exercise aligned with the branch’s known efforts to modernize its aircraft fleet. “The service is attempting to develop and field both a Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA) and Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA), as well as a variety of Air-Launched Effects (ALE) capabilities along with a modular open system architecture that makes it easier to upgrade and modernize as time goes on,” she wrote.

The exercise looked at how concepts like algorithmic warfare and multi-domain aviation were improved by the more concentrated use of ALEs in different domains, offering a more meshed and extended network for soldiers to leverage.

Read more about the details and findings of this exercise here.

Army, Air Force Form Partnership, Lay Foundation for CJADC2 Interoperability

As increased collaboration not just across U.S. military branches but also with coalition partners becomes a lynchpin for success across domains, agreements like the recent one between the Army and Air Force establishing the development of Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control, or CJADC2, are becoming more expected. According to an announcement from Joseph Lacdan of the Army News Service, “Army Chief of Staff Gen. James C. McConville and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown, Jr. discussed how to best combine each service’s assets to achieve greater synchronization” during a recent meeting at the Pentagon.

The partnership establishes standards for data sharing and service interfacing to be used through the end of 2022’s fiscal year to bolster those strategies in-theater. “The core challenges of the future fight are speed and scale,” said Lt. Gen. Charles Flynn, Army deputy chief of staff, G-3/5/7 in the announcement. “The future fight will be much faster, and the joint force will have more sensors and more shooters. (It will) be more widely distributed than ever before.”

The collaboration will combine the Army’s Project Convergence with the Air Force and Space Force’s Advanced Battle Management System, or ABMS, which are both designed to help warfighters make faster, more informed decisions in battle. Both approaches bring a fresh perspective to the other branch and surely relay best practices and lessons learned as the battlespace continues to move at a more rapid pace than ever.

Read more about this collaboration effort here.