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Blockchain at the Tactical Edge: Enabling an Internet of Battlefield Things

Future large-scale combat operations against a peer or near-peer adversary will involve a cyberspace domain in addition to the more traditional physical domains of air, land, sea, and space. The role that data and information play at every point in this continuum cannot be understated. Moreover, the ability to communicate effectively and coordinate across multiple domains simultaneously—to enable an internet of battlefield things—is dependent upon accessible and reliable information. This paper presents the results of a study that evaluated the use of blockchain technology to address challenges with increasing amounts of disparate sensor data and an information-rich landscape that can quickly overwhelm effective decision-making processes. The team explored how blockchain can be used at the tactical edge to support an internet of battlefield thing approach by verifying users, validating sensor data fed into artificial intelligence models, limiting access to data, and providing an audit trail across the data life cycle. The team developed a conceptual design for implementing blockchain for tactical data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning applications; identified challenges and limitations involved in implementing blockchain for the tactical domain; described the benefits of blockchain for these various applications; and evaluated the findings to propose future research into a wide set of tactical blockchain applications. The team studied three use cases: (1) blockchain at the tactical edge in a “data light” information environment for long range fires, (2) blockchain to secure tactical medical information in electronic health record, and (3) blockchain for collecting multiple types of tactical sensor data for chemical weapons defense to support measurement and signature intelligence analysis using artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Blockchain, Internet of Battlefield Things, Hyperledger, Data Fabric, Long Range Fires, Electronic Health Record, Chemical Weapons

APA Style

Johnson, B., Kendall, A., Green, J., Nagy, B., Dogum, G., et al. (2023). Blockchain at the Tactical Edge: Enabling an Internet of Battlefield Things. American Journal of Computer Science and Technology, 6(4), 126-147.

ACS Style

Johnson, B.; Kendall, A.; Green, J.; Nagy, B.; Dogum, G., et al. Blockchain at the Tactical Edge: Enabling an Internet of Battlefield Things. Am. J. Comput. Sci. Technol. 2023, 6(4), 126-147. doi: 10.11648/j.ajcst.20230604.12

AMA Style

Johnson B, Kendall A, Green J, Nagy B, Dogum G, et al. Blockchain at the Tactical Edge: Enabling an Internet of Battlefield Things. Am J Comput Sci Technol. 2023;6(4):126-147. doi: 10.11648/j.ajcst.20230604.12

Copyright © 2023 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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