The second iteration of this NATO-led exercise took place around the Troia Peninsula, Portugal, from 18 to 29 September 2023. Conducted under the joint leadership of NATO Allied Command Transformation (ACT) and MARCOM, Dynamic Messenger 23 brought together more than 2000 civilian and military personnel from fourteen Allied Nations as well as Partner Nation Sweden.
The exercise consisted of drone operations in the air, on the ground and underwater, in order to practise the transmission of data between NATO units and the MARCOM command centre in Northwood, United Kingdom. Establishing such capabilities will ensure situational awareness, constant communications and secure data sharing between ships and maritime operation centres during NATO missions.
“The Agency’s support was instrumental in the success of the Dynamic Messenger exercise,” said Commander Nathan Winters, NCI Agency’s Exercise Planner. “A custom solution for connectivity was provided to MARCOM that enabled coordination, data sharing and interoperability among our forces. This enabled and reinforced NATO’s commitment to staying at the forefront of innovation in Maritime Unmanned Systems.”
The NCI Agency equally supported the preparation of the exercise by connecting and configuring devices to the core infrastructure of Portugal’s navy and setting up configuring workstations with the required software for the exercise. During the execution of the exercise, the NCI Agency’s CIS Support Unit Lisbon and Command and Control Support Centre remained on-call, providing technical support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The NCI Agency has proved itself to be a flexible and agile supporter and provider of maritime capabilities. Within two weeks, the needed hardware was delivered and the technical infrastructure connecting Portugal, the exercise host nation, to NATO equipment was established and secured. The NCI Agency continues to be resourceful, adaptable and responsive.