Discussion in 'Royal Signals' started by monkeyspanker, Apr 6, 2004.
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I'm sorry, but is it yet another case of "be careful, you might get what you ask for!"?
What exactly are you driving at here ? I know the people who are building this and they seem to think they're delivering what they've been asked to.
And the key word here is "seem".
but if you ask for rubbish then surely you get rubbish??
and there we were thinking
This exciting new system will deliver new capabilities to British Forces. CORMORANT uses Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) technology adapted for the military to deliver high tech equipment, quickly. Due in service with the field Army within a couple of years, CORMORANT will comprise two primary equipments. Firstly a local access component, based on an ATM switch, which will provide digital voice subscriber facilities and a high speed data LAN for over 20 Headquarters. A wide area component will allow the interconnection of these Headquarters, on a 'backbone' communications network across a large geographical area as well as the means to interconnect with single service and multinational systems. Interconnection of components will be possible using microwave radio relay, satellite communications, commercial cable bearers and a new tropo scatter 'over the horizon' capability. CORMORANT will also provide a limited mobile secure voice capability and a comprehensive communications network management system.
who are they trying to kid?
The original question - are you asking why we need Cormorant or questioning the way it has been managed?
Battlefield Mission prep started today. We'll know in a couple of days if it is able to work without falling over (and without constant hands-on by the civvy company). PM me if you have questions...it's far too politically charged to shout from the rooftops right now.
Guys & Gals take the hint as indicated above. Thanks.
mmmmmmmmm Been with defense industries since I retired as an advisor and various other titles (inluding tw*t mdn before you jump in ) and that is the favourite line no matter what they work on.
The system needs revamping, or should I say the dog needs to start waggling the tail, not the other way round.
ps ... am p*ssed right now also , but you get my drift ..................right
My experience comes from working for defence companies. Sometimes they get it right, sometimes they don't.
If they can prove that they've delivered what they've been asked for then the customer should shut up and concentrate on asking for what they actually want. Whining that what you've asked for isn't what you wanted is tedious when your small child does it, but unacceptable when someone senior from the DPA does it.
However, if they haven't delivered then nail their backsides to the wall - this does seem to be the current DPA attitude, and quite right too. The only thing that could possibly let the company off the hook is DPA mismanagement - hence the rather low rate of nailings. (I saw this at close range on one of the large projects that BAE took a bath on by the way.)
And the above comments are general by the way, no inferences should be drawn about specific projects.
we said it before
and we say it again
we love DPA!
After a LOT of work by the troops at 2 & 30 Sigs (lucky buggers worked the easter weekend), the battlefield mission has been postponed due to equipment unreliability and some real network problems. If it doesn't work over a direct fibre-to-fibre link, what hope is there for a dirty radio signal?!
When Cormorant finally works it should be excellent but, at the moment, it's so complicated that it's really difficult to pinpoint the cause of technical problems. The squaddies are unable to get stuck in because it's all COTS kit which they are unused to.
Maybe FALCON will prove more reliable?
Why will it be excellent? Let's take a look at it. A small node will comprise a MOAT DURO (bloody great 6 wheel vehicle) and will need a 4 tonner for the loose stowage items (oops - forgot about them) and possibly extra genes on trailers. What does it replace? A switch - just a little box, like a PROMINA. Oh, ok, it has a PBX built in too. Two boxes. And all the other kit, the JOCS servers, the MMARS, the secure fax etc all still needs to be taken on top.
Remember - this does NOT replace PTARMIGAN, it is a new concept for the operational level. The only places you will see this are at the component HQs ie JTFHQ JFLogCC, JFLCC etc. What do they use at the moment? Well, the JTFHQ has a nice little BOSCA (2 boxes) that does the job well and can be put on pallets. Ok, the others are all light years behind and still use MINIMUXes but there has to be a better suggestion than CORMORANT.
What is the biggest problem that 30 Sigs always have? Getting enough Air Transport (AT) to take the kit - they always have to leave stuff behind at the last minute. Now, what's it going to be like in the future when you have to include an extra 4 tonner and a DURO? And why would you want a tactical vehicle at an operational HQ in the first place? Ok, maybe at the Land component... Can you see a DURO at PSAB, QATAR, BAHRAIN? I think not.
If you really want a laugh, have a look at the long-range bearer (tropo). A 50W gene for a 1W output! It has a danger area of about 400m and needs to have enormous holes bored into the ground to support it. Just imagine trying to site that at an *operational* HQ...
Good concept - very badly put into practice. This should all be COTS kit in boxes that can be put on pallets. No need for 6x6 vehs. Maybe a little bit of ruggedisation for the LAND component (but, then if the Army separated the LAND component from the tactical HQ that could be civvy too). No need for ridiculous genes that require the crew to wear ear defenders ALL THE TIME.
We got what we asked for.
I said it SHOULD be excellent - i.e. does exactly what it says on the tin. I didn't say that I necessarily agreed with the concept.
Well...you do - rightly - take us back to the original question of WHY we need it. It could be that Cormorant, at a mere £80m, will act as a trial run for Falcon.
There are many flaws in the concept, for example why do we need dismountable boxes? Is it so we don't have to leave vehicles to rot on their axles? Well - surely they could have put in hardwired stuff to optimise space and, when on ops, lift the boxbodies off the Bucher Duros. Just a thought.
On the positive side, Cogent is riddled with ex-scaleys. What price resettlement eh? Saucer of milk for PD (whoops...almost typed milf )
The dismountable boxes is I believe for static field HQ deployment rather than a mobile HQ setup.
Well that is the information I got when speaking with the Corm team in Blandford many moons ago when discussing Fibre optic support.
Yep...you're absolutely right, but it's a nightmare of wiring when you see the physical work needed to strip out a whole nod, coupled with the 'snakes tea party' wiring.
It's true that a dismountable system would be good for such semi-permanent rigs like could be used on TELIC. One feature that the staff won't be so keen on is the deployment of SGM boxes (basically a hub for phones and PCs) under their desks. They're bloody huge, with cables all over the place.
It's not Cogent's fault though...I'll misquote the start of this thread by saying "you get what you ask for". One lesson learned from the past few weeks is that the Army should insist that future projects are fully tested BEFORE they are given to units to train on. Again I don't think that these faults rest with the civvy contractor (no I'm not trying to get a job there!) but they should have been reigned in earlier. Hopefully Falcon won't fall into that trap.
My solution? Use Voice Over IP (VoIP)
Still need the cables tho...
Doesn't Cat 5 only use 4 conductors out of the 8, maybe could bring resuse some old 7 Quad - a bit of a bodge but could work.
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