AURORA, Colo. --
Command and control experts from Air Combat Command and Air Force Material Command’s Kessel Run discussed the future of the air operations center weapon system during a panel at the 2023 Air and Space Forces Association Warfare Symposium, on March 7, 2023.
ACC’s Col. Alan Docauer, chief, Directorate of Operations, Command and Control, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance, participated with Col. Frederick Coleman, commander, 505th Command and Control Wing, and Bill Torson, Kessel Run’s warfighting architect.
With changes in technology and modern warfare, it has become critical for the Air Force to address modernizing and streamlining command and control operations, which have been provided at the AOC level for over 30 years. The panel discussed the continued evolution of AOCs in regard to C2 capabilities including advancements in communications systems that have already been put into place and the way forward for the future evolution of AOCs.
“It’s critical that we get back to taking initiative and advantage of opportunities on the battlefield,” said Docauer. “In order to do that we must be able to provide reliable operational-level C2 capabilities through AOCs across multiple areas of responsibility. To do this we must continue to work on advancing and modernizing AOCs to stay technologically relevant in order to prepare for the future fight.”
KRADOS, or Kessel Run All Domain Operations Suite, is one advancement in C2 operations already being used operationally. KRADOS streamlines the air tasking order process, and automates planning functions that were completed manually in the past. Systems like this help add to the continued evolution and relevancy of the AOCs for the Joint Force as well as coalition and allied partners in current and future conflicts.
“It could not be more clear, from our AOC commanders all the way up through the Chief and the Secretary, that we go to war with our partners no matter what. And what it takes to get there is a combination of technology and policy,” said Torson. “Moving our AOCs from tech stacks in a basement to multi-tenant, cloud-based AOCs is the big-picture solution for distribution of accurate information to the warfighter.”
The evolution of the AOC and C2 operations is an ongoing endeavor that will continue to require experimentation, collaboration with coalition partners, and input from industry to ensure the Air Force’s strategic advantage in future conflicts.