In combat and tactical vehicles, soldiers can access communications systems that display a complete picture of the battlefield. However, these high-tech situational awareness features are viewed through different computer systems, over separate monitors and with little room to spare. Now the Army is looking to replace that "swivel chair" approach to situational awareness by introducing a standardized family of tactical computers that is scalable and tailorable to the mission and vehicle. With a modular "build-your-own-system" computer, users will be able to access and operate several different software applications over a single piece of computer hardware.
Known as the Mounted Family of Computer Systems (MFoCS), the new capability will bring interoperability to tactical computers and improve the Soldier experience by allowing them to better plan, monitor and execute missions.
The building block approach introduces three MFoCS models: the basic, intermediate, and advanced. The basic configuration is a tablet, while the intermediate model adds a processing unit with a 12, 15, or 17-inch display. The advanced model includes not only the tablet but also two intermediate units for a total of three workstations, making the three MFoCS models interchangeable and easily customized to fit any mission. The tablets are ruggedized and operate on a 25-foot cable so Soldiers inside a vehicle can pass the display around or even detach it and take it outside.
Designed to run the Army's primary situational awareness capability, the system will also support other command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance applications and provide mounted computing solutions for the Marine Corps.