Historically, the first military communications had the form of sending/receiving simple signals (often hidden or encoded to be unrecognizable for the enemy). Respectively, the first distinctive tactics of military communications were called Signals, while units specializing in those tactics received the Signal Corps name. Later Signals and Signaller became a highly-distinct military occupation dealing rather with general communications methods (similar to those in civil use) than with weapons.
Present-day militaries of an informational society conduct very intense and complicated communicating activities on a daily basis, using modern high-tech telecommunications and computing methods. Only a small part of these activities is immediately related to the combat actions. That's why some prefer the term "military communications".
In 1934, the USSR invented the first military based equipment inside an automotive vehicle.
Military communications equipment
Many pieces of military communications equipment are built to encrypt and decode transmissions and survive rough treatment in hostile climates. They use many frequencies to send signals to other radios and to satellites.
Military comms are activities, equipments, techniques and tactics used by the Military in some of the most hostile areas of the earth not only geographically but also from the point of view of the conditions of operations and equipment functionality like in battle fields, on land, underwater, air and whatever other conditions one can encounter. Military comms includes Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence which is also known as the C3I model. The Command here refers to the communication with the Highest Command in the country.
The first military comms tool was the communication automobile designed by the Soviet Union in 1934. The basics of the communications in the beginning was the sending and receiving of signals – which were encoded so that the enemy would not be able to get hold of any top secret communication. Then the advent of distinctive signals which lead to the formation of the Signal Corps, this corp., specialised in tactics of military comms. They evolved into a distinctive occupation where the signaller became a highly technical job where they dealt with all available communications methods including the civil methods.
In today’s world where war is to be avoided at all costs the role of the military comms is more intense, complicated, hi-tech, bordering on futuristic with the communication satellites, reconnaissance drones and aircraft. Computers and their varied uses have revolutionised military comms. Fortunately these activities are not only related to action in combat but also gathering intelligence to prevent war.
There are 6 categories of military comms, the alert measurement systems, cryptography, military radio systems, nuclear command control and the signal corps. Another new concept is network-centric warfare.
The alert measurement systems – these are various state of alert or readiness for the armed forces used world over – be it a state of war, terrorism or military attack against a state. They are known by different acronyms or example – DEFCON, INFOCON and REDCON in the US military comms and BIKINI states in the British protocol.
Cryptography is the study of methods of converting readable messages into guised unreadable information, unless one knows of the methods of decryption. This military comms method ensured that the messages reached the correct hands and eyes or ears. Nowadays digital cash, signatures, digital rights management and intellectual property rights and secure electronic commerce are its new purviews. It is also being used in computing, telecommunications and infrastructure.
There are close to 97 different categories of military comms by radio. To name a few are ACP-131, AN/ARC-164, AN/ARC-5, HWU transmitter, Hallicrafters SX-28, SCR-197, SCR-203, SCR-270 radar, etc.
- Command and control
- Signal Corps
- Communications protection
- Electronic warfare
- Signals intelligence (SIGINT)
- Defence Information Infrastructure
- Kiev Military Institute of Control and Signals
- Bowman (British Army Communications System)
- Parakeet (Australian Army Communications System)
- Military Wireless Museum in the Midlands
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