Posts Tagged ‘Reconnaissance’

UAVs Help Fight Pirates

February 3, 2009

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The guided-missile destroyer USS Mahan (DDG 72) brings an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) capability to Combined Task Force (CTF) 151, which enhances the counterpiracy task force’s effectiveness.

This UAV supports the CTF 151 counterpiracy mission by providing maritime surveillance and cueing on suspicious activity.

“This is a significant step forward and is reflective of the increased use of UAVs across the spectrum of military operations,” said Cmdr. Steve Murphy, Mahan’s commanding officer.

The unique attributes of a UAV – namely the ability to stay airborne for long periods and cover hundreds of square miles of ocean during the course of one mission, all the while sending imagery in real time back to Mahan and other assets in the task force – provide a significant tactical advantage.

“It can fly day or night in a covert or overt posture, making it much harder for pirates to hide” said Murphy.
“It is also important to note that the images and information obtained [by the UAV] at sea is shared with our coalition partners, thereby improving overall mission effectiveness and strengthening key partnerships between navies.”

As part of Combined Task Force 151 Mahan is coordinating and deconflicting counterpiracy efforts with approximately 14 nations also operating in the Gulf of Aden, Red Sea, Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea.

Taken in context with other aircraft and ships operating in the area, the UAV is considered by Murphy and other leaders in the task force as a force multiplier. The information the UAV generates also helps CTF 151’s leadership determine where to position all available units.

“It provides high quality imagery in real time, speeding decision making and is a significant advantage in stopping piracy on the high seas,” said Murphy. “It is versatile and very responsive, able to change operating areas and change missions in mid-flight.”

Mahan has integrated the UAV into every mission it has conducted while on deployment, gathering valuable information on maritime traffic patterns and the patterns of those suspected to be involved in illicit activity.

According to Murphy, it also helps protect the ship and crew, providing extended surveillance and early indications of potential threats.

“[The UAV] has great significance as a developing effort to apply 21st century technology to the 21st century challenges that our Navy faces.”

The civilian and Sailor team operating the unmanned aerial vehicle on Mahan is documenting lessons learned during this mission and throughout the ship’s deployment. This information is expected to contribute to the U.S. Navy’s plans for the future of UAVs at sea.

(NNS)

The Battlefield Surveillance Brigade

December 9, 2008

Stryker Brigade in Iraq

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The Battlefield Surveillance Brigade (BFSB) conducts intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance operations to enable the division or corps commander to precisely focus joint combat power and simultaneously execute current operations while preparing for future operations. The brigade is composed of a headquarters, a military intelligence battalion, a reconnaissance and surveillance battalion, signal network support and logistics support companies. A variety of unique assets, such as a Long Range Reconnaissance Company, Reconnaissance Troop and HUMINT Company provide another tool to address the commander’s priority intelligence requirements (PIR).

The initial design of the BFSB was outlined in the Operational and Organizational Concept for the Battlefield Surveillance Brigade in 2007. Both active component and reserve component BFSBs have been approved for the Army, and brigades are already participating in Operation Iraqi Freedom.

At Fort Knox, KY., the Maneuver Center of Excellence’s Maneuver Battle Lab conducted a Computer Assisted Map Exercise (CAMEX) from Oct. 20 to 24. The experiment, involving participation from both Active and Reserve Component BFSBs, as well as subject matter experts from various proponents, addressed the brigade’s mission and capabilities. Initial insights from the experiment identified a wide variety of actions to be taken, as well as validating the need for further research to improve the Army’s ability to exploit the BFSB’s capabilities.


The Chief of Armor presented the initial insights developed during the October BFSB CAMEX at the Reconnaissance Summit held in November 2008 at Fort Knox. This venue was intended to provide refined guidance from a variety of senior leaders (to include the TRADOC Commander) who will drive the way ahead for the BFSB doctrine refinement
as well as organizational and material actions. The Maneuver Center of Excellence will continue to develop the BFSB’s concept throughout Fiscal Year 2009 culminating with the initial release of FM 3-55.1, The Battlefield Surveillance Brigade.

Military Space Portfolio Safe Under Obama Administration?

November 21, 2008

Space programs should be safe from possible defense spending cuts under an Obama administration, though some high-profile programs that have suffered numerous delays with immature technology could be in jeopardy, military analysts told Inside the Air Force. (paid subscription required)

Air Force training Navy pilots on UAS tech

November 13, 2008
Aviation Calendar 2009

Aviation Calendar 2009

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The U.S. Air Force is increasing efforts to address the call for more surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities through new training initiatives, reports UPI.

Among other things USAF and Navy are showing true joint spirit: Air Force RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV instructors are training Navy members to fly their own reconnaissance drones.

Read more at UPI

Officials See Room for Sensor Growth in RC-12 Intelligence Aircraft

November 9, 2008
Aviation Calendar 2009

Aviation Calendar 2009

Our military Aviation Calendar 2009 features 13 images of US and allied military aircraft in action. Buy the Aviation Calendar 2009 exclusively at the PatriArt Gallery for only $ 19.99. Worldwide delivery available.

The Air Force is outfitting its rush-to-war RC-12 intelligence planes with hardware systems that will allow for plug-and-play sensor expansion, according to Air Combat Command officials.

Read the full report at Inside Defense

New ISR Task Force Teams to Focus on Next-Generation Concepts

October 24, 2008
Aviation Calendar 2009

Aviation Calendar 2009

Our military Aviation Calendar 2009 features 13 images of US and allied military aircraft in action. Buy the Aviation Calendar 2009 exclusively at the PatriArt Gallery for only $ 19.99. Worldwide delivery available.

The Pentagon’s new chief of Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance task force has stood up two new advisory teams, focusing on rapidly fielding new ISR concepts and technologies, a senior Pentagon intelligence official told InsideDefense.