Multi-Domain Operations (MDO) Challenge



Impenetrable technology platform that enables and executes decisions rapidly and accurately

The future of the US Air Force, the Joint Services, and our Allied Partners is dependent upon investing in solutions that will enable seamless Multi-Domain Operations (MDO). In some scenarios, MDOs will have less than 15 minutes to receive incoming data, orient data into useful information, make decisions, and then disseminate situational awareness to the relevant people who will perform multiple actions to create a dominant effect. MDO solutions provide a capability to interoperably respond more effectively to dynamic, real-time events such as defensive and offensive operations along with stability operations such as responding to humanitarian crises.

This Challenge aims to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the US and its Allies' integrated operations in the areas of air, space, land, sea, cyber and the electromagnetic spectrum. We must also resolve complicating factors such as how verified data can be shared and correlated across multiple security levels as well as geographic and military service boundaries. The innovative solutions uncovered in this Challenge will provide ways for data to be available to all relevant users and turned into coordinated action in a timely manner.

Another consideration for this Challenge is the potential for adversaries to attempt to disrupt MDO activities. We cannot simply trust any single sensor's data anymore. We have to validate the information before we use it.

In September 2018, the Vice Chief of Staff of the US Air Force, General Steven Wilson, challenged Airmen, Academia, and Industry to iteratively establish a Multi-Domain Operations (MDO) capability to support actions within 15 minutes or less as part of complex coalition actions. In a world dominated by rapid innovation, he challenged everyone to look around and find better ways to establish situational awareness, develop Courses of Action (COAs), and deliver effects at unmatched speed with Joint and coalition partners. Future areas of operation will be Joint, multi-national, multi-regional, inter-agency in varying locales, and will develop at extraordinary speeds.