OCEAN2020: a webinar on Modelling & Simulation activities

09 April 2021

The third webinar of OCEAN2020, held on 30 March, focused on the role of Modelling & Simulation activities in the project, underling the approach and the results achieved during the simulated trials.

M&S plays a key role in OCEAN2020, since the effective integration of unmanned platforms in tactical naval systems implies work on naval systems, platforms, sensors, effectors and information fusion functionality. To this aim the project has put a big effort in modelling and simulation of the operational concepts to validate the overall OCEAN2020 architecture`s, prototyping and verifying information fusion and UxS deployment functionality and proving communication and operation resilience in simulated contested environment. 

Therefore, these activities also include simulated trials to demonstrate technology improvement and de-risk live trials, as well as address specific aspects that cannot be covered in live trials (e.g. contested electromagnetic environment, meteorological conditions).

Three simulated trials were carried out within the project, the last one was held one week before the webinar and concluded the OCEAN2020 modelling and simulation activities.

The First and Second Simulated Trial performed simulated execution of the operational scenarios run during the demonstration, testing the system architecture and assessing the behaviour of a European Task Force. The Third Simulated Trial focused on a more challenging scenario, increasing the number of threats - fast attack vessels- to be simultaneously countered and checking the system behaviour in severe electromagnetic and environmental conditions.

The unmanned system capabilities of the European Task Force in the Third Simulated Trial were enhanced by swarming of unmanned aerial, surface and underwater unmanned vehicles and deployment of missile systems on board of unmanned aerial and surface systems for the neutralization of high speed surface threats, the protection of choke points and the detection of underwater intrusions.
Dedicated vignettes were run to demonstrate the system resilience at Jamming and in case of High Sea State and Strong Wind, as well as the system effectiveness for Underwater Mine Countermeasure and Anti-Submarine Warfare. Twelve laboratories distributed over six countries (Germany, Italy, UK, Netherlands, Spain, Greece) carried out the Third Simulation Trial exploiting a dedicated Virtual Private Network, a standard High Level Architecture (HLA) for integrating simulation building blocks and NATO standards for the operational data exchanges.

Moderated by Alessandro Marrone Head of Defence Programme, Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI), the webinar represented a dedicated opportunity to present M&S results.

After an introductory remark about the main mission and the current status of the European Defence Fund given by Michael Alcantara, DG DEFIS, EC, Ignacio Montiel -Sanchez, EDA, presented the role and potential of M&S in defence research, detailing how M&S can develop into a crosscutting service provider for a wide range of operational and armaments developments in defence domains: Air / Land / Sea / Space / Cyber / Multi-domain.

Then, after a short introduction of the project given by Antonino Arecchi, OCEAN2020 Project Coordinator, Leonardo, Wilmuth Mueller, OCEAN2020 Project Manager IOSB, explained the objectives of M&S in the project.  M&S contribute to removing barriers preventing an effective integration of UxSs in tactical naval systems, improving interoperability between manned and unmanned systems and testing the overall OCEAN2020 architecture’s resilience against environmental, operational, technical and functional obstacles, as well as complementing the OCEAN2020 Live Trials through the execution of Simulated / Virtual Trials.

 Florian Fisch MBDA, Erik Di Quirico MBDA, and Thomas Mansfield, CMRE, illustrated the achievements of multi-domain distributed simulation in OCEAN2020, while Mathias Anneken IOSB and Achim Kuwertz IOSB presented Data Fusion and Situation Awareness Prototyping and the Use of the M&S Outcomes for their Evaluating and Refining.