SUFFOLK, Va. —
Nearly 1,800 military personnel from U.S. and partner nations participated in Bold Quest 17.2 in Savannah, Georgia, the latest in a series of coalition capability demonstration and assessment events sponsored by the Joint Staff.
Over the course of 18 days, members of the U.S. armed services, National Guard, U.S. Special Operations Command, NATO Headquarters and 16 partner nations participated in the demonstration, which collected technical data on systems and subjective judgments from the warfighters using them.
The Joint Staff, as the overall operational sponsor, set the conditions for the participants to inform future investments in proven solutions to improve fires interoperability, in particular.
During Bold Quest, military and civilian members, developers and analysts convened in a unique problem-solving cooperative where partner nations pursued each of their own technical interoperability and procedural objectives while also leveraging the power of collective resources.
“This was the largest and most complex demonstration in the 14-year history of this series,” said John Miller, the Joint Staff’s Bold Quest manager.
Locations for the live air, ground and maritime operations included Fort Stewart, Hunter Army Air Field, Townsend Bombing Range and offshore Warning Areas adjacent to Georgia’s Atlantic coast.
The Bold Quest series began in 2001 as a combat identification technical project and the first operational demonstration took place in 2003 with U.S. forces and five other partner nations.
Bold Quest has since evolved through 20 operational demonstrations in the U.S. and Europe. The Bold Quest coalition now includes 18 nations: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Sweden, United Arab Emirates, the U.S. as well as NATO Headquarters.
The Joint Staff’s C4/Cyber Directorate (J6) oversees the implementation of a coalition network, which is designed along Federated Mission Networking principles and distributed to multiple sites throughout the U.S. and overseas. This growing constellation of sites provides Bold Quest participants with additional options to participate via simulation (live/virtual/constructive) from home stations.
From its Combat Identification origins, Bold Quest has expanded to include capability development in other mission areas associated with fires interoperability:
- Friendly Force Tracking
- Coalition Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance
- Shared Situational Awareness
- Digitally Aided Close Air Support
- Cyber (Effects, Tactical Level and Network Defense)
Other trends in the evolution of the Bold Quest series include: increasing leadership roles and responsibilities of partners; integrating interoperability objectives and unit training opportunities; strengthening ties with U.S.-based hosting installations and aligning with major exercises in the U.S. and overseas.
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