The Air Force is looking to upgrade the Battle Control System-Fixed (BCS-F) that provides NORAD with comprehensive air surveillance and the ability to carry out command and control missions. Specifically, officials at Hanscom AFB, Mass., want to be able to process new data sets, including from the Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast, which would improve accuracy by providing additional aircraft details, according to a 66th Air Base Group release. “For instance, if we saw a stuck track, we’d have the ability to pull up the emitter category of the aircraft to see if it’s a helicopter instead of tasking resources to get a visual confirmation,” said 1st Lt. Dylan Byrd, a launch deputy project manager, according to the release. Updates to the tactical display framework and alerts and track history function will also be made. A request for proposal is expected near the end of Fiscal 2017. In the meantime, the BCS-F is being enhanced to reduced identification track swaps, extend effective coverage, and reduce target dropouts, according to the release.
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.