Impacting Beyond Defence

Despite what some may think, we don’t just work on defence-related projects – we go wherever the nation calls, and support Singapore on a Whole-of-Government (WOG) level too!

As the designated Centre of Excellence for Command, Control and Communications (C3) in the public service, we play a leading role in driving and developing C3 capabilities across the SAF and other public agencies.

The importance of C3 cannot be understated in today’s threat landscape where information is king. Using a wide range of technologies, information from diverse sources – such as sensor data, surveillance footages, or data from other systems – can be fused intelligently to create up-to-date situation pictures. This allows multiple parties working together to plan and manage mission-critical operations efficiently.

The Crisis Information Management System (CIMS) is one of the key capabilities that we have developed to enable a WOG response during major incidents and crises, with the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) being among the first agencies with this operational capability. Our engineers developed the MHA CIMS to amalgamate and sense-make incidents and event information from multiple sources. By exchanging information with other Homefront agencies, the MHA CIMS makes it possible to generate a common map-based situation picture with real-time updates, facilitating closer inter-agency collaboration during homeland and maritime security operations.

Built with an iterative approach, the MHA CIMS was enhanced continually with new capabilities to address the evolving nature of threats.

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“We had a great time working closely with MHA during every phase of the project. The iterative approach allowed us to identify the users’ needs, develop useful capabilities, and integrate data that could improve operations on a day-to-day basis and during emergencies effectively,” explained Senior Engineer (Systems Engineering and C3 Centre (SECC)) Chris Ng.

We have also been a close partner of the Police Coast Guard (PCG) in maritime security for many years, and implemented generations of C3 systems. These systems continue to be refreshed with new technologies and capabilities to address the changing maritime threat environment.

This includes an enhanced C3 and surveillance system, which provides the PCG with a maritime situation picture for better coverage and incident management. The integrated system suite, comprising a C3 subsystem developed in-house by our engineers and multiple high-performance sensors, provide comprehensive and persistent surveillance coverage.

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The team comprised engineers from diverse backgrounds including radar, electro-optics, data fusion, software engineering, network infrastructure and cybersecurity. With their multidisciplinary expertise, they worked with the PCG closely to achieve the capabilities. The enhanced C3 and surveillance system incorporates a multi-sensor tracker with a fusion engine that processes more sensor loads at a faster speed, and offers enhanced maritime situational awareness. It also provides improved coverage for surveillance and threat detection in our territorial waters.

Beyond defence and security, we are also working with the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) to develop the Integrated Port Operations C3 (IPOC) system. The IPOC system will serve as an integrated system for MPA to work efficiently with key stakeholders in the port community and public agencies to coordinate and manage incidents.

Senior Programme Manager (SECC) Alex Tay shared: “I am excited to explore new ways of doing things. For starters, we used the design innovation process to explore new concepts of operations that could harness the power of artificial intelligence. As the system’s use cases are expected to expand and evolve constantly, we used an agile development process to engage MPA regularly and refine development requirements along the way. We’ll also pilot the use of DevSecOps – short for Development, Security, and Operations – an approach that integrates security throughout a project’s development cycle. This will allow us to provide continuous delivery of software releases to build up operational capability reliably and efficiently."

Deputy Port Master Captain Charles Alexandar De Souza from MPA added: “We look forward to the launch of the IPOC system, which will bolster our operational capabilities and bring us to the next level of operational effectiveness and efficiency.”