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Director for Intelligence Joint Chiefs of Staff
Mobile Apps O Polar GEOINT High Performance Computing
March 2014 Volume 12, Issue 2
ATEP-II Letitia A. Long
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GEOSPATIAL INTELLIGENCE FORUM Features
March 2014 Volume 12, Issue 2
Cover / Q&A
The Arctic region, with its diminishing icepack and resulting increase in maritime and other human activity, is becoming a more important part of the strategic picture of the United States and other nations, and geospatial technology is playing a vital role in improving knowledge of its forbidding seaand landscapes. By Henry Canaday
Heterogeneous technology enables computational capacity to keep up with the rate at which geospatial and other data is growing. By Chris J. Michael, Elias Z. Ioup and John T. Sample
An estimated six industry teams are competing for a contract to provide the Air Force and key members of the intelligence community with nearly $1 billion in advanced GEOINT and measurement and signature intelligence (MASINT) technology and services. By Harrison Donnelly
High Performance Computing
Advanced Exploitation Competition
16 Rear Admiral Paul Becker
NGA Sets Its Compass North (and South)
The National GeospatialIntelligence Agency has an extensive array of programs devoted to meeting military, navigation and scientific needs in the Arctic and Antarctic regions.
As geospatial intelligence, like so much else in the modern world, increasingly integrates mobile technology into all aspects of operations, one of the key challenges facing developers is to ensure that the ubiquitous devices can efficiently share the data they collect and receive. By Peter Buxbaum
A new mobile application developed by Riverside Research is providing critical situational awareness to operators in the field by letting them know when their area can be seen— and perhaps as importantly, not be seen—by overhead imaging satellites. By Harrison Donnelly
In a recent address to the Esri Federal GIS User Conference, Letitia A. Long, director of the National GeospatialIntelligence Agency, hailed the contribution of four NGA critical strategic GEOINT integration initiatives in the response to the recent Philippine typhoon.
Sharing While Mobile
Mobile App Tracks Overhead Eyes
Vice President Geospatial Intelligence Solutions Exelis
LOCATE, RETRIEVE, AND SHARE GEOSPATIAL DATA — WHEREVER IT IS Visit us at the 2014 Esri Federal GIS Conference booth 801 for a live demonstration. www.baesystems.com/gxp
Disaster Aid Confirms NGA Progress
2 Editor’s Perspective 3 PROGRAM NOTES/PEOPLE 14 Industry Raster 27 Resource Center
Director for Intelligence Joint Chiefs of Staff
“Integration doesn’t come naturally; it takes time and effort to get results from disparate parts; experience doing that in the complex environment of Afghanistan paid dividends for doing the same in the complex world of Washington, D.C., as well.” –Rear Admiral Paul Becker
Geospatial Intelligence Forum Volume 12, Issue 2 • March 2014
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The traditional gift for a 10th anniversary is made from tin, which is an element that doesn’t carry much panache these days. So I hope the good folks at the Army Geospatial Center (AGC) and U.S. Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF) won’t take it the wrong way when I offer tin-plated congratulations on two initiatives, each of which has had a significant impact on the field of geospatial intelligence over the past decade. The AGC’s 10-year-old is the BuckEye program, which has provided unclassified, shareable, high resolution three-dimensional (HR3D) terrain data to U.S., coalition and host nation forces in both Iraq and Afghanistan Harrison Donnelly since 2004. Its biggest accomplishment has been the revival of combat Editor mapping, and the expectation that warfighters should have tactical and urban scale HR3D terrain data at their disposal wherever they go, rather than merely data at strategic and operational scales. BuckEye became the essential element of GEOINT in Afghanistan and Iraq because it was unclassified and shareable. In a coalition war fighting environment that sought to achieve integrated operations with uncleared host nation forces, it was the unclassified and shareable nature of the BuckEye data that drove its widespread adoption. USGIF, meanwhile, has become an important force in the defense, intelligence and homeland security communities since its incorporation. It offers the annual GEOINT Symposium, regular networking events, technical workshops, training opportunities, educational initiatives and other programs, all built on the group’s three strategic pillars: build the community, advance the tradecraft, and accelerate innovation. The foundation has grown from seven founding companies to nearly 240 member organizations, and the GEOINT Symposium has become the largest intelligence event in the United States. USGIF will commemorate its 10th GEOINT Symposium April 14-17 in Tampa, Fla. That in itself is a story and a sign of the vitality of the geospatial industry, as the foundation staff and volunteers had on short notice to pull together a rescheduled event following the cancellation of last fall’s meeting due to the federal shutdown.
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GEOINT for the Battlefield The U.K. Ministry of Defence has given initial approval to a battlefield geospatial intelligence system designed to provide significantly improved situational awareness for the British Army. Lockheed Martin U.K. and Team Socrates, its industry team, have now completed Tranche 1 of the Field Deployable GEOINT (FDG), which is part of the overall Picasso program. The Picasso program provides strategic to tactical level mapping and digital geographic information and imagery-derived intelligence. Following the success of the initial program, Team Socrates has been awarded FDG Tranche 2A, which will provide additional FDG systems, a forward map distribution point and further tactical map distribution points (TMDP) capability. FDG delivers a data centric GEOINT management, discovery, dissemination and exploitation capability that addresses the deployable requirements of the U.K.’s Joint Force Intelligence Group, including the provision of mobile and maneuverable working environments at the tactical level. The system includes a fleet of 11 tactical information and geospatial analysis capabilities—a two-man, self-contained, tactical exploitation working environment (container) used for collection and GEOINT analysis mounted on vehicles. FDG also delivered three vehicle-mounted containers equipped as TMDP, operated by a two-man team.
Trusting Your Instincts The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), within the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, has announced its first challenge contest, INSTINCT, to advance understanding of human interactions that involve trust and trustworthiness. INSTINCT—Investigating Novel Statistical Techniques to Identify Neurophysiological Correlates of Trustworthiness—is conducted in partnership with the Air Force Research Laboratory. “Trust plays a fundamental role in many human relationships, organizations, and behaviors,” said Adam Russell, IARPA program manager. “Knowing who can be trusted is essential for everyday interactions and is especially vital for many intelligence community missions and organizations. Improving this capability to know whom to trust could have profound benefits for the IC, as well as for society in general.” In 2010, IARPA launched its Tools for Recognizing Useful Signals of Trustworthiness (TRUST) program to identify promising technologies and approaches that could significantly advance the IC’s capabilities to assess who can be trusted under conditions and in contexts relevant to the IC, even in the presence of stress and/or deception. INSTINCT seeks to sponsor the development and testing of innovative algorithms that can use data from one participant to accurately predict whether their partner will make trusting decisions and/or act in a trustworthy manner. Challenge “solvers” are given access to sample data against which they may train and test their algorithms. Solvers are then asked to use their algorithms to submit predictions for an evaluation data set. The algorithm that produces the most accurate predictions will receive $25,000, with $15,000 offered for second place and $10,000 for third.
PEOPLE Air Force Brigadier General Francis X. Taylor (Ret.) has been nominated for undersecretary of homeland security for intelligence and analysis. His past government service has included assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security and director of the Office of Foreign Missions, and commander for the Air Force Office of Special Investigations from 1996 to 2001. Pamela Drew, president of Exelis’ Information Systems business, has received the additional title of executive vice president of the company. Her previous industry experience includes TASC, where she was senior vice
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president of strategic capabilities and technology, and Northrop Grumman, where she was sector vice president of business development for the Mission Systems sector. Dr. Roger Mason, former assistant director of national intelligence for systems and resource analyses for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, has joined Noblis, a provider of science, technology and strategy services, as senior vice president of national security and intelligence. The SI Organization has appointed Michael Polmar
as senior vice president of business development. Prior to joining the SI, he has been senior vice president, business development of ManTech’s Technical Services Group, and vice president for business development and marketing at SAIC’s Intelligence and Information Systems business unit. Boundless has named Paul Ramsey as vice president, product management, where he will be responsible for leading the direction and development of the OpenGeo Suite and related Boundless products.
Pixia, a provider of highperformance scalable large data access solutions, has hired Mark Sarojak as vice president of sales, Western U.S. and APAC, where he will be responsible for expanding the company’s direct and indirect sales channels in these expanding markets.
GIF 12.2 | 3
4 | GIF 12.2
Synthetic aperture radar and other GEOINT data offer keys to understanding the increasingly important Arctic region.
As the Arctic region, with its diminishing icepack and resulting increase in maritime and other human activity, becomes a more important part of the strategic picture of the United States and other nations, geospatial technology is playing a vital role in improving knowledge of its forbidding sea- and landscapes. President Obama last year issued a national policy articulating the linkage between events in the Arctic and enduring U.S. national interests, and the Department of Defense followed up with a policy statement addressing â€œpotential changes in the future
By Henry Canaday GIF Correspondent
security environment due to the increased access and activity in the region.â€? The good news is that satellite imagery, synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and other methods are providing far more information about the Arctic and still-isolated but potentially resource-rich Antarctica than that for which explorers like John Franklin and Robert Scott gave their lives. But the poles remain the hardest parts of earth to survey, because of both extreme weather and technological challenges involving communications and other issues.
GIF 12.2 | 5
Although SAR imaging of the poles has been completed, mostly for defense needs, SAR imaging for civilian purposes has been expensive. That may be changing, however, as the Europeans put up a new set of satellites that will provide much more SAR and other data. Moreover, getting polar images to ships in real time, which is one of the crucial safety uses of polar intelligence, still faces big communication hurdles. That problem too may be eased, at least for the Arctic, as Canada pursues a communications satellite initiative.
Military, Navigation Needs Polar intelligence serves a number of purposes, including military and security, navigation and maritime safety, and scientific research. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency maintains a portfolio of nautical charts and data that enable the U.S. military to project power and safely navigate the Arctic. NGA is also part of the internationally coordinated World-Wide Navigational Warning Service responsible for navigational warnings in the Arctic. For scientific purposes, the Polar Geospatial Center (PGC) at the University of Minnesota works with the National Science
NGA Sets Its Compass North (and South)
Foundation (NSF). PGC and NSF make extensive use of U.S. commercial satellite imagery to support work in Antarctica, Alaska and the Arctic. They have also used some airborne light detection and ranging capabilities (LiDAR). PGC is an unclassified organization that works under cooperative agreements with NSF, NASA and the Fish and Wildlife Service, explained Principal Investigator Paul Morin. “We help land LC-130s in remote areas, and we do biological censuses and elevation models,” he said. PGC uses images from the NGA’s commercial imagery program, provided by Digital Globe. PGC monitors changes in coast lines and permafrost, analyzes and passes data on to hundreds of other federally funded researchers on a variety of topics, including glaciology. Until four years ago, PGC had no seamless coverage of the Arctic and Antarctic. Now it does, from electro-optical (EO) satellites of Digital Globe. “It gives sub-meter detail, 50 centimeter panchromatic and multi-spectral to two to four meters,” Morin noted. “That is key to us, because before we just had NASA at 10 to 15 meters.” The data comes from mostly polar orbiting satellites, so as long as the sun is up, the satellite can take still pictures of the same spot several times a year. This repetition is important because the Arctic landscape changes so much during the year, between frozen and thawed and back again.
(Editor’s Note: Following are edited excerpts of information about NGA polar programs, as provided by the Office of Corporate Communications.)
The Maritime Safety Office (SH) of the National GeospatialIntelligence Agency maintains a worldwide portfolio of unclassified and classified standard nautical charts, bathymetric charts, digital nautical charts, tactical ocean data and nautical publications that provide all required navigational products for the U.S. military to project power and safely navigate the globe, including the Arctic region. In providing and maintaining this global portfolio, SH works in close partnership with other trusted foreign hydrographic offices and has bilateral exchange agreements in place to burden-share and transfer maritime safety information data, products and services with each other. These agreements include in some cases NGA-adopted foreign national charts providing coverage for the Arctic region and other areas of the world. The Geodetic Surveys Division (SNS) provides geodetic survey support to the Department of Defense in the Alaska and Greenland (Thule) areas of the Arctic region. SNS is a fielddeployable surveying office that provides precise geophysical and geodetic positioning information. SNS provides support in the form of airfield surveys, missile launches, and radar positioning and alignment. NGA/SH maintains a global data store, to include the Arctic region, of bathymetric holdings that include unclassified and classified U.S. and foreign hydrographic office single-beam surveys, multi-beam surveys, and ship track-line data. Some of these bathymetric data holdings have been processed and are currently included on NGA maritime products, but some have not.
6 | GIF 12.2
The annual Canada/U.S. (CANUS) meeting attempts to address both topographic and hydrographic surveying and charting for the Arctic, mainly concerning the seamless landwater interface in the region. CANUS membership consists of national and defense mapping, charting and imagery agencies, and is collectively responsible for ensuring a collaborative and coordinated response to requirements for geospatial information, imagery and services. The group’s hydrographic panel is focused on safety of navigation and regional cooperation issues that include co-production activities for nautical charts and maritime safety information data sharing within the Arctic region. NGA/SH is one of three internationally recognized hydrographic authorities in the U.S., along with NOAA and the Naval Oceanographic Office. Senior analysts and managers from SH are included as part of the official U.S. delegation to International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) regional hydrographic commission meetings, including the Arctic Regional Hydrographic Commission (ARHC). Member states in the ARHC, which meets annually, are Russia, Denmark, Canada, Norway and the U.S. The group is concerned about maritime safety in the region, and to that goal members attempt to work out hydrographic survey coverage, nautical charting and safe ship routing. NGA/SH is part of the World-Wide Navigational Warning Service (WWNWS), which now includes coverage and assignment of responsibilities for navigational warnings in the Arctic region.
for scientists. The center has three stations in the Antarctic, but There is an “absolutely astonishing difference” between the uses Air Greenland on that vast island. new images and what was available before, Morin said. The new EO The big need now, Morin said, is for radar images, since the imagery can shoot the poles in stereo, and PGC can extract 2-meter Arctic and Antarctic are dark half the year and can be cloudy any elevation models. “We never had that before, it’s very accurate,” season. The European Space Agency (ESA) plans shortly to launch Morin said. “It’s almost LiDAR, but without the logistics of LiDAR. its radar satellite, Sentinel. “But we don’t know their data policies, You don’t have to fly into remote places where if you get into trouand these are not our assets,” Morin said, adding that like all satelble, there are not a lot of places to land.” lites, radar satellites are expensive. Indeed, U.S. Arctic researchers once had to fly many reconnaissance missions just to see where their aircraft could land. “Now we have images of caves, rocks, crevasses Radar Imagery and ice,” Morin said. “We give these to scientists and they know where to land instead of wandering Radar images of the poles are hardly nonexistent. around.” For example, MDA, an international communicaPGC has been exploiting these improved images, tions and information company with roots in Canada, mapping all of Alaska and 85 percent of Greenland. operates the RADARSAT-2 satellite, which provides Half to two-thirds of the Antarctic has been mapped, imagery at spatial resolutions from 1 to 100 meters while parts of Canada and the Siberian Arctic and covers 144 to 250,000 square kilometers in a sinare essentially unmapped from an unclassified gle scene. RADARSAT-2 imaging supports single, co-, perspective. cross- and quad-polarization options. To do its mapping, PGC does orthorectification “With 17 imaging modes, RADARSAT-2 provides Herb Saterlee and elevation models. Much of this work has to be the greatest flexibility of any SAR mission, enabling automated, creating big-data challenges for the center, which howcustomers to select the right combination of resolution, polarization ever has received some data-storage and processing resources from and swath width to address their imaging requirements,” said Herb NSF and NASA. Saterlee, MDA’s chief executive officer. PGC provides some support for the New York National Guard MDA offers polar intelligence provided by RADARSAT-2, LC-130s, but it mostly helps with glaciology, biology and logistics including ice monitoring; strategic and tactical imaging of Arctic
Five new Arctic NAVAREAs were officially established in 2012, with coordination responsibilities assigned to Canada, Russia and Norway. NGA still maintains oversight on the WWNWS by holding the chairmanship of this IHO/IMO sponsored service and the governing IHO WWNWS Sub-Committee. NGA’s GeoSciences (Gravity) Division (SNA) has been a primary lead, along with the Danish National Space Institute (DTUSpace), in developing the Arctic Gravity Project (ArcGP), an effort among 10 countries to compile a public domain grid of the Arctic gravity field north of 64 degrees north. ArcGP 5’x5’ gravity and geoid data has been available to the general public since 2000, with one update made in 2006. NGA and DTU-Space, along with the University of AlaskaFairbanks, plan to develop a new ArcGP gravity grid (5’x5’) by the end of 2014, taking advantage of a wealth of new gravity and bathymetric information in the Arctic. SNA supports gravity data collections in the Arctic on board the USCG Healy, and continually collects data from a variety of additional airborne and marine platforms in the Arctic to meet DoD navigation requirements. All of this gravity data is incorporated into NGA’s gravity products to DoD, and is also utilized by the U.S. in the UN Convention on Law of the Sea negotiations. SNA also includes the latest bathymetry from the International Bathymetric Chart of the Arctic Ocean and other sources into a digital bathymetric and elevation data product used by NGA and its customers. NGA also is active in the Antarctic area, including Operation Deep Freeze (ODF), a joint military program supporting scientific
research on that continent. In collaboration with mission partners, NGA analysts produce graphic and digital instrument flight procedures to ensure safety of navigation for all ODF airborne operations. As airlift operations expand, and more air carriers become involved, this support continues to become even more essential. ODF takes place during the austral summer, between October and February, when weather conditions are more favorable but still unpredictable. During these months, NGA products are used by several multi-national operators, including the U.S. and New Zealand air forces, NASA, SAFAIR, and the Australia Antarctic Division. During a typical flying season, the U.S. Joint Task Force alone flies more than 350 missions, carrying some 5,800 passengers and 13 million pounds of cargo. NGA began providing flight information publication support to ODF in 2006. The bulk of aeronautical navigation support is provided between mid-August and mid-November. During this time period, graphics terminals analysts produce instrument approach procedures, standard instrument departures, and standard terminal arrival routes to the three primary airfields at McMurdo Station as well as South Pole Station and several base camps throughout the continent. Without NGA products, ODF could not safely resupply research programs in the region. Outside of ODF, NGA products have also been relied upon for emergency air-drops and medevac operations during the treacherous winter season. NGA instrument flight procedures are critical to the safety of navigation worldwide, and even more so for Antarctic operations.
GIF 12.2 | 7
constraints; data for geographic information systems that can be integrated into operational maritime systems; data for safe navigation through ice-infested waters; fusion of sensor data so maritime customers can quickly monitor areas from ports to coastal approaches on the open ocean; and multi-sensor threat detection for security organizations. MDA’s capabilities will be further enhanced with the launch of the RADARSAT Constellation Mission (RCM), which comprises three satellites providing round-the-clock coverage. “Information obtained from RCM can include repeat imaging of the same area at different times of day, dramatically improving the frequency of monitoring coastal zones, northern territories, arctic waterways and other areas of strategic and defense interest,” Saterlee said. RCM will also incorporate automatic identification systems, which combined with SAR will enable identification of ships worldwide. The biggest remaining challenge in exploiting all this polar data is communications, Saterlee noted, especially systems that can stably handle large amounts of data beyond 75 degrees of latitude. Several northern nations are studying the launch of polar-orbiting satellites to fill this communication gap in the Arctic. The Canadian Department of National Defense, meanwhile, is seeking additional X-, Ka-, and UHF-band satellite coverage in the Arctic, recently issuing a request for information for a polar communications and weather (PCW) mission. For the Arctic, PCW would seek to provide reliable 24-by-7 tactical communications in UHF, reliable communications in the X- and Ka-bands, frequent circumpolar weather imaging, and space-weather monitoring.
Greenland’s Glacier Petermann (shown here in an image captured by an Airbus Defence and Space Pléiades satellite) “calves” a massive block of ice. Geospatial technology is playing a key role in monitoring such changes in the Arctic region. [Image courtesy of Airbus Defence and Space]
More and better SAR is coming from Europe, including from Raw SAR and other satellite data must be interpreted and comAirbus Defence and Space, through the geo-intelligence program bined with other data, as in weather forecasting, to be useful, line of its communication, intelligence and security business line. Johnson said, adding, “You need to understand the physics.” “We have been developing SAR for several decades,” explained The Copernicus program will provide the kind of long-term data Mick Johnson, an Airbus executive who also serves as director of the needed by climate scientists, and sponsors want to make it a comCentre for Earth Observation Instrumentation. Development began mercial service as well, for example for oil rig safety and to protect with ESA’s two European Remote Sensing satellites, launched in ships against icebergs. “There are some things that the Sentinels 1991 and 1995, and will be continued with the Copernicus program’s will provide that are high value and you cannot get now,” Johnson first two Sentinels. said. “Not many people will use them, but they are In addition to seeing at night and through clouds, high value.” SAR can provide more quantitative data. For examAirbus’ Infoterra unit is responsible for delivering ple, the current CryoSat satellite combines SAR and Arctic services from Copernicus. Communications altimeters to measure ice thickness. are still a challenge, since most communication satSentinel SAR will improve performance over ellites do not cross the poles and must thus send its predecessors, with better spatial resolution and signals obliquely, through the polar atmosphere. increased information content, said Johnson. “Everything is tougher at the poles,” Johnson noted. A set of 10 satellite missions, Copernicus repreThe Copernicus program represents Europe’s sents a shift from scientific to operational constellanext step into gathering polar intelligence, said Mark tions, while also giving users confidence in long-term Drinkwater, head of ESA’s Mission Science Division. continuity. “You can plan on these being there for 20 Mark Drinkwater Sentinel 1A, a SAR satellite, will be launched in late years, and you will know the data will be coming in March or early April 2014, while Sentinel 1B, also carrying SAR the future,” Johnson said. equipment, will go up in 2015. “These will give us continuous Copernicus consists of two SAR satellites, two optical satellites, C-band images for the next 15 years or more,” Drinkwater said. two for ocean surface and temperature, and two pairs for measur“There will be more data once both 1A and 1B are deployed.” ing air quality. Johnson said he would like to offer more frequent Drinkwater noted that MDA’s RADARSAT-2 is a commercial updates of polar images, but for that more than two of each satelmission, whose data acquisition is largely driven by paying customlite type would have to be operating simultaneously. “If we could get ers. “Moreover, the imaging mode over a specific geographic region a low-cost satellite, getting half a dozen at a time would be ideal.” 8 | GIF 12.2
is not routinely in a fixed swath mode/resolution, or polarization. This makes applications based on a robust time-series of equivalentmode data quite challenging.” In contrast, Sentinel-1 will provide routine, free and open data acquisition, in a set of standard acquisition modes over any given zone in order to allow services to flourish.
New Capabilities Other Copernicus satellites may also be important for polar intelligence. ESA’s CryoSat is already measuring ice thickness. The two Sentinel 3 satellites will do radar altimetry year round. Altimetry depicts the extent of sea ice and the wave environment. “When we can define the extent of ice area, that will allow much better intelligence for ship routing and safety,” Drinkwater explained. Sentinel 3 will also carry imaging instruments for sunlit landscapes and provide better information on ice conditions. Sentinel 1 and 3 are the two main Copernicus satellites important for the Arctic and Antarctic. But ESA also has the MetOp satellite, working with NOAA in joint polar orbiting to improve weather forecasting. “The U.S. does p.m., and we do a.m.,” Drinkwater said. “We already have approval from European Union members for MetOp’s second generation, so we will have lots of observation systems for the next 25 years.” Sentinel 1’s SAR images will provide important data for ship routing through marginal or sea ice. The SAR capability offers two possibilities. It can do a wide area swath of 400 kilometers with 90-meter resolution, or give a slightly narrower interferometric swath with much Very high resolution satellites, such as this next generation Pleiades unit in the clean room in Toulouse, France, will be a key resource in tracking Arctic changes. [Image courtesy of Airbus Defence and Space] better spatial resolution. important, since Sentinel will generate about 2.4 terabytes a day of SAR also makes possible multiple polarization information. “Ice raw data. forecasting services like to have two polarizations for dividing ice Sentinel will make civilian SAR data “routine and robust,” and water and dividing ice into classes like old, newly formed and Drinkwater said. “You also need vessel identification, so we are conyoung ice,” Drinkwater said. “This is important for operations and sidering putting AIS on satellites. Then you would only need satelship routing.” lite-to-ship communication, to make all this operational by getting These capabilities will be useful for monitoring ice drifts and it to the end user, the end point of all this.” pressure environments, and that in turn will help in ship routCanada’s PCW program may provide that crucial, last coming. At present, vessels cannot be sent into areas of even thin ice, munication link, at least in the Arctic, Drinkwater suggested. if pressures will drive the ice toward shore and possibly trap the In any case, more and better images at night and during cloudy vessels. SAR imagery from Sentinel 1 will be available free from weather are coming. “Civilian SAR is revolutionary: data every day ESA to organizations that register on the Copernicus webpage, or and every week.” O make arrangements with the European Union for special access to the data. And, as part of Copernicus program, ESA will furnish MyOcean, a special service for operational oceanography. MyOcean will offer fundamental products and analytics from Sentinel, and data such For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly at email@example.com or search our online archives as temperatures, currents and sea-ice conditions from which users for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com. can derive their own products. These interpretational services are www.GIF-kmi.com
GIF 12.2 | 9
Sharing While Mobile One of the key challenges facing developers of mobile devices is to ensure that they can efficiently share the GEOINT data they collect and receive. By Peter Buxbaum GIF Correspondent
As geospatial intelligence, like so much else in the modern world, increasingly integrates mobile technology into all aspects of operations, one of the key challenges facing developers is to ensure that the ubiquitous devices can efficiently share the data they collect and receive. The goal is to enhance the utility and effectiveness of GEOINT by bringing usersâ€”virtuallyâ€”to places of interest in near real time. Progress in this area is proceeding on two fronts. The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is working on standards to enable the sharing of geospatial data over mobile devices. Application developers in government and industry, meanwhile, 10 | GIF 12.2
are responding to the demand by creating programs that enable the generation, analysis and dissemination of geospatial intelligence on tablets and smartphones. Following open standards such as those promulgated by the OGC enables systems to crunch data from a variety of sources and to seamlessly harmonize processes to deliver synthesized results. The OGC has several relevant standards in place that are already being followed by mobile application developers, and has four more in development that are directly focused on mobile. There are also non-OGC standards that have been promulgated that help geospatial application developers build their products. www.GIF-kmi.com
GIF 12.2 | 11
Mobile App Tracks Overhead Eyes
By Harrison Donnelly, GIF Editor
analysis. The mobile app offers a customized interface specifA new mobile application developed by Riverside ically tailored to each mission and providing only the exact Research is providing critical situational awareness to operainformation needed by the warfighter. tors in the field by letting them know when their area can be Riverside was driven to develop the mobile app by seen—and perhaps as importantly, not be seen—by overhead what it has seen in the community, which is a imaging satellites. movement to get data closer to the operator, Created by the not-for-profit compaexplained John Ploschnitznig, MADLab director ny’s Modeling and Application Development and senior technical adviser. Laboratory (MAD Lab), Seamless Opportunities “Our goal is to provide the necessary data to for Mobile GEOINT is a mobile GEOINT appliallow a customer to still take advantage of what cation that enables users to determine satellite we can do in a very sensitive environment, and access times—that is, when passing overhead make available to them to help support what assets will be able to provide them tactically they are trying to achieve outside, be it operrelevant imagery information. If needed, it can ational, special operations or a special testing also tell them it is safe to move around unseen environment,” he said. by the growing constellation of orbiting senJohn Ploschnitznig The app begins by harvesting location inforsors operated by a wide range of international mation, which then goes back through the secure network to interests. support an information request. The system can then tell the The Seamless Opportunities app leverages the power and user when a certain satellite will have access to his position, security of the company’s client-based Automated Collection without divulging sensitive details of the satellite or its spePlanning Tool (ACPT), which manages all the relevant satelcific position. lite position and capability parameters needs to perform the
A scenario illustrating the utility of the GXP Xplorer Mobile application might be a mission focused on disaster response. A commander might send teams out to scout out problems areas and report back. “Our theory was that they should be able to report back immediately over a 3G network or something like that,” said Zipperer. “They go out and see something that needs to be addressed, such as a downed power line, an IED, or a building of interest, depending on what their mission is. They can snap a picture of it, make some quick notes, and upload that to the server. All users across the enterprise, including users of other mobile devices, can see and act on that result.” Other users can use the application’s search utilities to discover imagery and information relevant to their jobs or set up automatic alerts, based on the identification of key words, that will push that information to them via email or text message. “Users that set up notifications will be notified instantaneously of the availability of the imagery or information so that they can act on it appropriately to the given situation,” said Zipperer. “Others can discover that information by using our data discovery tool.” Data discovery can be accomplished with a mapping utility. The system can identify all areas of potential interest within a given radius of the user’s location. Searches can also be accomplished with key words to add an additional filtering layer to the geospatial context. “Users want to be able to drill down to the areas that matter to them most,” said Zipperer. “Geospatial is good, but you want to be able to do more.” The imagery displayed on a tablet by way of the Xplorer Mobile application can be viewed and manipulated in a variety of ways. “Users can open images, pan and zoom on them to discern whether the area has changes since they last looked at it,” said Zipperer. “A road that was present before a natural disaster may 12 | GIF 12.2
no longer be there. The point is to give the users the most relevant possible information for them to do their jobs.” Users can also use the application to produce intelligence products such as PowerPoint presentations. “These presentations are also accessible to other users,” said Zipperer. “That is a good thing to have access to because it contains all the information that went into a decision process.” The GXP Xplorer Snap application is focused on users of smartphones, as opposed to tablets. “Not everyone has a tablet, and they are too cumbersome to use to take pictures in some situations,” said Zipperer. “Snap focuses on reporting alone. Personnel out in the field can use this app to take pictures with their smartphones and upload the images for use by other users. They can take a picture, write some notes, and it is automatically geo- and time-stamped and uploaded to the server.” BAE Systems has sold its GXP servers to the Army, Marine Corps and Air Force, and the Mobile app is in use internationally in conjunction with the U.S. server assets. “The Mobile app is being used in a kind of a symbiotic relationship with a local government,” said Zipperer. “We have people over there working with that local government to exchange information. That foreign government has a voracious appetite for mobile capacity and is one of our largest customers.”
Imagery Platform ITT Exelis has made its Jagwire solution for the management and dissemination of tactical imagery and video available on a mobile platform. Jagwire Mobile allows users, such as soldiers operating in environments where bandwidth is limited, to capture, process and rapidly access imagery and data from remote networks. “The Jagwire Mobile solution offers much of the same functionality of the Jagwire enterprise version, which is important www.GIF-kmi.com
“All you care about is what time of day will that satellite be able to support your need, whether a military operation or a field experiment. The goal is to be able to reach back and use the specific information about a satellite or system of interest, and have it tell you the information that we have pre-planned in a safe environment. So when you push button #1, it will tell you that what you care about happens between 1 and 1:15. It will tell you when a satellite has access to you, but also when those satellites don’t have access to you. So it answers both when you can be seen and when you can’t,” Ploschnitznig said. Each scenario is set up back at the lab, using the ACPT to configure each of the buttons in the mobile app. When the buttons are configured, they are set up to give users only a handful of options. So if they push button #1, the system recognizes that as one or more satellites, and indicates when they have access to the user. One key to success, Ploschnitznig made clear, is the information that is not included. “When you look at what we do in support of a customer with our current ACPT, that’s a very
for users in bandwidth-constricted or hostile areas,” said Phillips. “Jagwire Mobile uses advanced data compression techniques to allow video and image capture and processing into the Jagwire repository, where the imagery is indexed and becomes searchable by other users on shared networks.” For example, Exelis has leveraged the Jagwire Mobile platform to create an application that transforms night vision goggles into sensors, the output of which can be viewed by commanders. “What warfighters in the field are seeing through the night vision goggles appears as live full motion video to the enterprise,” said Phillips. “Commanders can see what soldiers are seeing. The night vision goggles are functioning like a sensor on an UAV, or a wearable mobile device.” At the same time, commanders can push information back to the goggles. “By using location services and other input such as signal intelligence, commanders could, for example, send an image of a person of interest with a message to the warfighter to be on the lookout for that person. These are seen by the solider as an overlay on the images he sees through the goggle,” Phillips said. “The network has become the highway for all mobile applications,” said Morrell. “In the case of military and intelligence applications, priorities, communities of interest, security and classification levels have to be taken into account. Standardsbased networks provide the infrastructure that can handle new loads so that when new applications are introduced they can be up and running quickly. Implementations that used to take five or six weeks to provision can now be done in a couple of hours.”
Mobile Comes First The continued development of standards for mobile geospatial applications, according to Phillips, will facilitate proliferation of those types of tools, because the mobile apps will be built from the ground up. “The key thing we are seeing is that mobile is coming www.GIF-kmi.com
sophisticated tool with a lot of features. So you ask what you can remove from a query so that you don’t degrade the data to the point where it’s not useful. To do that, we had to be able to identify the basic essential pieces of information, and capture that in a query that will be accepted by our system. “You have to tell the engineers that you know they want to do a thousand things, but you have to hold them back and tell them to focus on just five pieces of information,” he added. The hardest part in doing an app like this, Ploschnitznig acknowledged, is to make sure that the results are something that an operator can easily interpret. “That’s a very difficult thing, not technically, but how to set up the colors and how you want the operator to manipulate the software,” he explained. “Many times, operators are wearing big gloves or are carrying a lot of other equipment. They want the ability to easily work through the application, with big buttons and a simple interface. An operator can be overwhelmed with information, so our goal is to give him only the information he needs at the right time.”
first. User experiences will be built specifically for the mobile device instead of a mobile user trying to interface with desktop application over a mobile browser. Going from large to small is a lot harder than starting small and growing it bigger.” In addition, geospatial mobile applications need to focus on functions that make the best use of mobile, according to Greg Eoyang, president of daVinci, a subsidiary of Intelligent Decisions that focuses on the mobile space. In order to avoid connectivity issues, “dense pieces like maps can be loaded on the device,” he said. “The interaction with the network occurs when an event occurs that needs to be examined geospatially. “Some things can be done better on a mobile device than on a laptop or desktop computer,” Eoyang added. “Think about things that can be done in 30 seconds or less and how they fit into business processes. Event management is an example. Human beings are exceptionally quick at figuring out what events in a stream they can ignore, what they have to act on now, and what they can flag for follow-up when they get to the office. Providing this kind of capability to an entire workforce can enable an organization to make better decisions. Instead of having to synchronize everyone and have them come to a meeting, you only have to ask them to plug in their brains for 30 seconds.” Assuming it is adopted, the GeoPackage standard could be included by OGC members in the fabric of their commercial products, although it is not mandatory. “Those companies can use compliance testing tools provided by OGC to see if their new products meets the standard’s requirements,” said Leinenweber. “The compliance testing tool provides a score, and if the product passes, the company gets a stamp of approval that it is compliant and they can label and market their product that way.” O For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly at firstname.lastname@example.org or search our online archives for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com.
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INDUSTRY RASTER Air Force Acquires Global Positioning/Inertial Navigation Systems The Air Force has awarded Northrop Grumman a contract for purchase and sustainment of its embedded global positioning/inertial (EGI) navigation systems. Under a contract with a potential value of up to $200 million, Northrop Grummanâ€™s suite of fiber-optic gyro-based navigation systems are available for the U.S. Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps and Navy as well as international customers. Northrop Grumman will also provide platform integration, modernization, flight test and technical support, training, depot repair and spares for its EGI. Northrop Grumman offers a variety of embedded GPS/inertial navigation systems to meet unique customer needs worldwide. Products such as the LN-251 and LN-260 feature a fully integrated, tightly coupled GPS inertial design for superior accuracy, in addition to open, modular architecture for greater adaptability. Joyce Chang; email@example.com
Image-delivery Software Upgrade Enables Web Browser Export LizardTech, a provider of software solutions for managing and distributing geospatial content, has launched Express Server 9 software. Express Server, which is imagedelivery software for compressed raster imagery, including multispectral imagery, uses patented technology to reduce storage costs, decrease image loading times and handle thousands of image requests, all without sacrificing visual quality. The latest version of Express Server comes equipped with the ExpressZip Web application for exporting imagery straight from the Web browser. Now, users can view all of their collections and query by location, keyword, projection and more. If users need to take
their imagery on the go, they can use the built-in selection tools to export their regions of interest. The entire ExpressZip application is open source and completely customizable. In addition, the improved upgrade functionality automates the process of migrating all image catalogs so users do not need to manually update thousands of catalogs when installing a new version of Express Server. There is no need to re-create existing image catalogs; instead, administrators just point Express Server to the existing catalog database and click Upgrade. Justyna Bednarski; firstname.lastname@example.org
Mobile App Shows Overhead Imaging Satellites Orbit Logic has made its SpyMeSat mobile app, previously available only for iPhone, available for Android devices. The SpyMeSat app provides notifications when imaging satellites are overhead and may be taking your picture. A dynamic map shows orbit tracks and the location of satellites with upcoming passes over the user-specified location. The SpyMeSat app uses NORAD orbit data published online by www.celestrak.com and available public information about commercial and international imaging satellites to compute and
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dynamically display imaging satellite overflights and pass information. The app user can drill down to see additional details about each imaging opportunity, and the app provides a page describing each satellite for those who want to learn more. SpyMeSat users can configure the app to enable or disable individual satellites, change the location of interest, enable or disable various notification options, and specify the resolution limit for computed passes. Alex Herz; email@example.com
Integration Completed on Next-Generation Sensing Satellite Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corp. has completed integration of WorldView-3, the next generation commercial remote-sensing satellite being built for DigitalGlobe. WorldView-3, the fourth remote-sensing satellite built for DigitalGlobe by Ball, is scheduled to launch from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., this summer. With the imagery sensor and associated electronics now integrated, the completed satellite bus is ready for system-level performance testing, followed by thermal vacuum and environmental testing. WorldView-3 is the first multi-payload, super-spectral, high-resolution commercial satellite for earth observations and advanced geospatial solutions. In addition to the satellite bus, Ball Aerospace is providing an atmospheric instrument called CAVIS, which stands for cloud, aerosol, water vapor, ice, snow. CAVIS will monitor the atmosphere and provide correction data to improve WorldView-3â€™s imagery when it images earth objects through haze, soot, dust or other obscurants. CAVIS has also been integrated with the spacecraft. Roz Brown; firstname.lastname@example.org
Compiled by KMI Media Group staff
Modernized GPS to Provide Increased Accuracy for Military Users Exelis has successfully completed several software upgrades for the new Global Positioning System Next Generation Operational Control System (GPS OCX). Integration and testing were recently conducted on iteration 1.5 of the OCX navigation, encryption and Mission Upload Generator (MUG) software. The new version of GPS software will help ground controllers better understand the satellites’ exact
NGA to Replace Library Management System The National GeospatialIntelligence Agency GEOINT Research Center (GRC) has awarded a prime contract to PTFS for a program called ILS Next. ILS Next replaces NGA’s legacy Voyager library management system, which has been in operation for over a decade. PTFS is supplying its COTS ArchivalWare Digital Library System (DLS) to satisfy the stringent and complex requirements of the contract. PTFS will work closely with the staff of the GRC to replace the legacy Voyager bibliographic cataloging system with ArchivalWare DLS. DLS is a state-of-the-art digital collection management system developed by PTFS that allows libraries and information centers to administer both print and digital collections from a single application. PTFS’ DLS enables ingest, cataloging, storage, discovery, conversion, repurposing, collection and assessment of geospatial and other multi-INT content on all three NGA network domains. PTFS’ expertise with hundreds of different geospatial file formats will help the GRC manage and share geospatial data throughout the IC. Robin Schaffer; email@example.com
positioning in space. The encryption software is also designed to automatically code and decode GPS signals, facilitating the exchange of user information by securely transmitting navigation payload data between the OCX ground system and the orbiting constellation of satellites. The MUG software is responsible for creating spacecraft payload updates to refresh the navigation data transmitted to all
GPS users. This data is typically generated for each satellite multiple times a day and helps to consistently minimize user error. The new capabilities offered by GPS modernization will provide military users increased accuracy, availability, anti-jam power and international interoperability. Jane Khodos; firstname.lastname@example.org
Battlefield GEOINT System Offers Improved Situational Awareness The U.K. Ministry of Defence has given initial approval to a battlefield geospatial intelligence system designed to provide significantly improved situational awareness for the British Army. Lockheed Martin U.K. and Team Socrates, its industry team, have now completed Tranche 1 of the Field Deployable GEOINT (FDG), which is part of the overall Picasso program. The Picasso program provides strategic to tactical level mapping and digital geographic information and imageryderived intelligence. Following the success of the initial program, Team Socrates has been awarded FDG Tranche
2A, which will provide additional FDG systems, a forward map distribution point and further tactical map distribution points capability. FDG delivers a data-centric GEOINT management, discovery, dissemination and exploitation capability that addresses the deployable requirements of the U.K.’s Joint Force Intelligence Group, including the provision of mobile and maneuverable working environments at the tactical level. Kailen Tuscano; email@example.com Shaun McDougall; firstname.lastname@example.org
Small, Low-Orbit Satellites to Offer Three Daily Revisits Space Systems/Loral (SSL) has received a contract from Skybox Imaging to build an advanced constellation of low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites for Earth imaging. The contract award helps SSL, a subsidiary of MDA that is best known for its high-power geostationary communications satellites, to further expand its capabilities building LEO imaging satellites and solutions. SSL will build 13 small LEO satellites, each about 60 by 60 by 95 centimeters and weighing roughly 120 kilograms, to be launched in 2015 and 2016. These satellites, based on a Skybox design, will capture submeter color imagery and up to 90-second clips of HD video with 30 frames per second. Once the 13 satellites are launched, Skybox will be able to revisit any point on Earth three times per day. Wendy Lewis; email@example.com
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Intel Must Be Part of War Winning, Not Just War Fighting
Rear Admiral Paul Becker Director for Intelligence Joint Chiefs of Staff Rear Admiral Paul Becker has been the director for intelligence (J2) on the Joint Chiefs of Staff since September 2013. Previous flag assignments include director for intelligence with U.S. Pacific Command, vice director of intelligence for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and director of intelligence for the International Security Assistance Force Joint Command in Afghanistan. Born in New York City in 1961, Becker is a graduate of Long Island’s Deer Park High School and commissioned an intelligence officer upon graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1983. Significant afloat assignments include intelligence officer with Attack Squadron 35 aboard USS Nimitz, temporary assignment aboard battleship USS Iowa, intelligence operations officer for the U.S. 6th Fleet aboard cruiser USS Belknap, and N2 with Carrier Strike Group 7 aboard USS John C. Stennis. Shore assignments include: analyst at the Chief of Naval Operations Intelligence Plot; flag aide to the director of Naval Intelligence; intelligence branch/assignments officer at the Bureau of Personnel; federal executive fellow at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy; the American Embassy in Paris as the assistant U.S. naval attaché; temporary assignment with the American Embassy in Skopje, Macedonia, as the assistant defense attaché (during Operation Allied Force), and the director of operations at the Joint Intelligence Center Pacific, Hawaii. In addition to service in Afghanistan from 2009 to 2010, his duty with U.S. Central Command since 9/11 includes: commanding officer of CENTCOM’s Joint Intelligence Center in Tampa, Fla., from 2007 to 2009; director of intelligence (N2) for U.S. Naval Forces Central Command in Bahrain from 2005 to 2007; intelligence watch officer in the Combined Air Operations Center at Prince Sultan Air Base in Saudi Arabia in 2003 during early Iraqi Freedom operations; and N2 for the Navy’s Task Force 50 in the Northern Arabian Sea from 2001 to 2002 during early Enduring Freedom operations. Becker holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government (2001), and diplomas from the Defense Language Institute (1991), the Naval Command and Staff College (1993), and Armed Forces Staff College (1996). Becker was interviewed by GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly. Q: What is the overall mission of the Joint Staff Intelligence Directorate (J2)? A: It’s important to start with the mission of the Joint Staff before talking about the mission of the Joint Staff J2. The chairman’s mission, and therefore the entire Joint Staff’s mission, is to provide the 16 | GIF 12.2
best military advice across the full spectrum of national security concerns to the president and other national leaders. The specific J2 mission has three key components: first, to provide strategic warning of threats to our national interests; second, to rapidly deliver all-source intel responses to military planning and contingency operations; and third, to assess, validate, integrate and advocate for current and future war fighting capability requirements of our combatant commands. Q: How is the J2 directorate organized, and what resources of people and capabilities can you bring to bear to achieve your missions? A: There are about 200 personnel in the J2 Directorate, including military, civilian and a Reserve component. All of our personnel are administratively assigned to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), with the exception of a small number of teammates who are embedded with us from other combat support agencies, such as the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency and National Security Agency, so we’re fully partnered. The J2 team is organized around functional lines. We maintain a 24/7 operational support watch and conduct analysis and warning, plans and policies, capabilities and assessments, targeting, ISR and a small amount of admin mission support. We’re a flat, responsive organization that’s more concerned with unity of effort instead of personnel and administrative lines of control. www.GIF-kmi.com
Q: How has your extensive experience in intelligence and other positions, including as director of intelligence (J2) for the International Security Assistance Force Joint Command in Afghanistan, shaped your approach to your current job? A: Several lessons apply. First is that “teamwork, tone and tenacity” are the characteristics that contribute to our positive command climate, which helps enable us to meet our mission. As far as serving in crisis and combat, I’d say full integration of all sources and disciplines was the greatest contributor to intelligence success, and the same applies here. Integration doesn’t come naturally; it takes time and effort to get results from disparate parts; experience doing that in the complex environment of Afghanistan paid dividends for doing the same in the complex world of Washington, D.C., as well. Another lesson learned in combat was that intelligence doesn’t just support operations; intelligence is operations. And to successfully conduct intelligence operations, we need to have a mindset that intel isn’t just part of ‘war fighting,’ but that intel is a part of ‘war winning.’ I also have a final couple of thoughts from service in the CENTCOM AOR that shape my current approach. First, counterinsurgency operations (COIN) taught me that war winning involves fighting an adversary’s strategy, not just their forces—and to do that, one need first comprehensively understand an adversary’s strategy. Secondly, success in COIN did not rely solely on a military solution of simply eliminating insurgents, and similarly, success in other highorder conventional military scenarios may not come from simply attacking adversary weapon platforms. Success comes from using information as a weapons system and using information to understand and influence all aspects of the battle space, from physical, political, informational and economic levels as well. Q: How would you define the concept of “joint intelligence,” and how does it differ from other types of military intelligence? A: I would use the term ‘interagency intelligence’ along with ‘joint intelligence.’ Joint connotes different U.S. military services, and coalition adds allies and partners. But operating with other branches of the U.S. government, beyond DoD, is the heart of where we need to be so that we’re most effective as an intel team. We do that here at JCS J2, and are part of a strong network with all elements of the U.S. intel community. Intel can be rather mechanic if it’s taken as an isolated function, but by tapping into a joint and interagency network, we can add context, perspective, value and increase our effectiveness. The chairman and combatant commanders don’t just have defense intelligence requirements, they have intelligence requirements. In order to give them what’s needed to achieve desired effects in peace, crisis and combat, we must be more than joint, we must be interagency. Q: How would you describe the role of geospatial information in military intelligence, now and in the future? A: It’s critical. We’ve been lucky over the past decade by having air supremacy in the skies above Afghanistan and Iraq, which allowed us to augment national technical means GEOINT with air-breathing GEOINT from both manned aircraft and remotely piloted vehicles. But in the future, we will need greater quantities of GEOINT concerning areas with denied airspace and from potential adversaries that are sophisticated at deception. Information is a weapon in www.GIF-kmi.com
modern warfare, and GEOINT is a big part of what constitutes information. I like the NGA motto, which says, ‘Know the Earth, show the way, understand the world.’ I can remember when the last part of that phrase, about understanding the world, wasn’t part of the motto. I’m glad it’s in there. NGA is the ‘gold standard’ in the IC for collecting and moving data. But we also need to go the next step and be able to add context to that data and turn it into information. To effectively win against any potential adversary, we need to have a deep understanding of that adversary’s strategy, and also the physical environment in which they operate. That’s why GEOINT is critical. Q: How would you define the rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region regarding specific short- and long-term threats to U.S. national security? A: Rebalancing towards Asia-Pacific as an imperative, not an option. The term ‘whole of government’ is almost a cliché now, but we really need every bit of it. The military is a leading aspect of U.S. government efforts to rebalance toward Asia/Pacific, but it’s not the only aspect. We are also in the process of rebalancing economically, politically and from a strategic communications (information) perspective. Our economy and strategic security is increasingly connected with the Asia-Pacific region. In the short term, the region is one that has been consistently beset with natural disasters, which have impacted our treaty allies’ and partner nations’ territory and people. It’s in our national interest to keep these allies and partners stable and secure by maintaining their territorial integrity, economic progress and quality of life. Also in the short term, there is one country, North Korea, which has nuclear weapons and has publicly threatened to use them against us. That’s not something to be scoffed at. In the longer term, we must understand a rising China. We are competitors with China at an international level, but that does not mean we need to be in conflict with them. One way we can avoid drifting toward conflict is through a deep understanding of China’s grand strategy, mindset, intent and the physical environment of their nation and its periphery. If we don’t understand Chinese strategy in the long run, we may think they are committing random acts in the Asia/Pacific theater, and to counter them, we might undertake random responses ourselves. So I’ll sum up that point with a rhetorical question: How many within the U.S. intel community truly understand China’s grand strategy, which they refer to as a ‘grand strategy for rejuvenation by 2050’? Our effective shaping of the future for the Asia/Pacific region depends on understanding just that. Q: What relationships could be expanded that allow the entire intelligence community and combatant commander Joint Intelligence Operations Centers to be swiftly brought to bear? A: There are physical and organizational aspects to relationship expansion. I like how NGA shows the way by physically embedding personnel where it matters most—forward with warfighters at different levels and theaters. I’m a believer that reaching forward is much more effective than reaching back. To be more specific, when NGA has an embedded analyst with an organization, they bring three things: expertise, true leverage back to the parent organization, and the ability to train others forward to be self-sufficient in the future. That’s an effective model for relationship expansion. Organizationally, there is great value to be added for the IC by expanding relationships with academia and open source intelligence GIF 12.2 | 17
networks. Not everything we need to know comes from highly classified/compartmented sources and methods. There is a great deal to learn from social media as well as academic and historical study of any environment.
information; and also to be more efficiently managed. There is a global force management system in place, and we—the entire Joint Staff—are evaluating the best ways to improve that as well. Q: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Q: What recommendations do you have that would optimize the global allocation of ISR resources for efficiency, effectiveness and the anticipated budget environment in support of Joint Force 2020 development? A: There is no easy solution here. Every boss I’ve had since 2001 has told me, ‘Fix ISR!’ I’m still working on it, as are many others. I’ll start with an approach as to what constitutes ISR. To many, it’s just satellites and air-breathing platforms. I believe it is much more. ISR has a terrestrial component, which can be SIGINT or HUMINT. ISR has a maritime component as well. These are all tools that should be comprehensively included into ISR considerations. But to respond more directly to the question, the chairman has issued a capstone concept for joint operations, called Joint Force 2020. The JCS J2 staff is preparing (with service and combatant command input) an adjunct ISR white paper that will complement Joint Force 2020. It’s still in draft, but the themes in it will include the need to be more diverse in the type of systems that we use; to be more interoperable so that systems can share data on common networks and dissemination architectures; to ensure collection platforms are more survivable because the enemy gets a vote on how these systems may receive/transmit
A: The JCS J2 team is always improving the quality of our professional network by listening and interacting more with those for whom we advocate at the services and combatant commands. We’re also trying to add more context rather than currency; not just sharing ‘what is happening?’, but putting more focus on the ‘so what?’ and ‘what’s next?’ The chairman’s guidance to all of the armed forces is that in resource constrained times we will do less, but we cannot do less well. I take that to heart, every day, and spend the most important part of my schedule considering how to make our JCS J2 team more effective/efficient, which includes improving the quantity/quality of relationships with other intelligence professionals and their organizations. To aid in that effort, I reflect often on the guidance of a former commander, General McChrystal, who encouraged us upon arrival in Afghanistan in 2009 ‘to challenge conventional wisdom, and abandon practices that are engrained into military cultures, and I ask you to challenge me to do the same.’ I’ve shared that guidance with the JCS J2 workforce as a compass to steer by, whether one is conducting counterinsurgency operations in Southwest Asia, wrestling with anti-access/area denial problems in the Pacific, or simply trying to improve staff processes in the Pentagon. O
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High Performance Computing
Heterogeneous technology enables computational capacity to keep up with the rate at which geospatial and other data is growing.
By Chris J. Michael, Elias Z. Ioup and John T. Sample The growth of both human- and sensor-generated digital information over the past several years is astounding. Geospatial data collection efforts can generate data on the order of terabytes per day, and trends show that the amount of data collected in the field will continue to grow. The data, such as satellite or undersea imagery, LiDAR, hyperspectral and sonar, is processed to generate higher-level data such as digital maps, networks and tracks. Within the last several years, the computing technologies we use for processing have not kept up with the rate at which data is being created. When real-time processing is a mission objective, the inability of processing to keep up with data creation is especially troubling. In many cases the computing resources necessary to meet processing requirements are greater than the size, weight and power constraints of an operational mission.
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The good news is that a performance deficit is not necessarily unavoidable; itâ€™s just a matter of taking the time to find the right set of tools for the job. Todayâ€™s stateof-the-art computing technology offers several distinct processor architectures, each of which specializes in distinct modes of computation. Using the right mix of processors, cost, energy, space and weight can be reduced to a fraction of that required when using only one type of architecture. Designing computers using many different specialized processor architectures rather than a single general-purpose architecture is referred to as heterogeneous computing, and is fast becoming the primary choice for building high performance computing systems.
Paradigm Shift For the past 30 years, the majority of computation has been performed on the same ubiquitous general-purpose processor architecture that is found in our desktop PCs. These processors were relatively cheap and constantly improving. Each new generation exhibited higher clock rates, a phenomenon known as frequency scaling, and increased transistor capacity. These processor improvements led to automatic speed-ups in existing applications. General-purpose processors grew to dominate the supercomputing world via the emergence of commodity clusters, where many general-purpose systems were networked together in order to communicate and function as one large computational device. Because the general-purpose processors employed by these systems were low in price and readily available, computing centers were able to get more bang for their buck compared to the more traditional custom-built supercomputers. Within the last 10 years, however, the physical properties and power dissipation limitations of these CPUs have driven manufacturers to design chips differently. Instead of one aggressive CPU core, manufacturers designed processors to have multiple, simpler cores. Today, it is not uncommon to see general-purpose processors with four or more cores. In turn, applications are no longer sped up automatically with every new generation via frequency scaling. Rather, applications are sped up via explicit parallelism. To take advantage of explicit parallelism, programmers have to manually change their application code, a process that is often quite difficult. As the multicore paradigm was becoming prevalent for general-purpose processors, other unique special-purpose
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designs emerged as well. While also requiring manual adaptation of code, these specialized designs excelled in different types of computation. The most popular example of a special-purpose computing architecture is the graphics processing unit (GPU), which grew from the need to improve performance when generating 3-D graphics. GPUs were designed to quickly perform many independent arithmetic computations in parallel. About a decade ago, the scientific computing community began programming GPUs to improve their computational scaling. Manufacturers soon supported this trend both in hardware and software, creating the general-purpose GPU (GPGPU). Having nearly 100 times the arithmetic computation capacity of a general-purpose processor, GPGPUs are available at competitive pricing and have a comparable packaging and energy footprint. GPGPUs excel at arithmetic, but lack the complex memory hierarchy of general-purpose processors. GPGPUs have proven incredibly effective for a wide variety of applications. Physics modeling, image processing, bioinformatics and digital signal processing are among the many applications that can benefit with these processors, often attaining speeds over 50 times faster than their CPU counterparts. When application execution does not fit well to general-purpose CPUs or GPGPUs, a more customized approach is necessary. Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) processors contain programmable circuitry that can be reconfigured in place within a matter of minutes. As a result, the processor architecture can be changed on the fly in order to suit different modes of computation. FPGAs were widely used in the 1990s for integrated circuit prototyping and development. Today, they are emerging in high-performance computing due to their ability to implement customized computing architectures, even though their clock rate and computational density is considerably lower than that of CPUs and GPGPUs. With this great versatility comes high potential for efficiency. However, the design process when utilizing FPGAs can be more challenging, since the hardware design often must be coded for each unique application.
Routing Analysis Computer scientists in the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) Geospatial Computing group are conducting research to effectively leverage these readily available
processor architectures to support processing in the geospatial domain. One of the more computationally intensive applications of interest is route analysis for vehicle navigation. Here, analysts are interested in the connectivity of street networks for mission planning purposes. Specialized algorithms will comb through huge amounts of data to build an index for finding the quickest routes between all nodes of the graph. The data used for analysis could be the streets of entire countries, and commonly contains more than five million intersections. Large-scale route analysis can take well over a month to complete on a modern desktop PC. Because the data is regularly updated and the results are often used in other tasks, however, a more efficient and timely process is required. Routing analysis requires intensive data access, but is light on arithmetic. Because of the immensity of the data and the unusual way in which it is accessed, general-purpose processors do not perform analysis efficiently. These processors are designed to operate on large contiguous chunks of memory, whereas the routing analysis typically operates on small chunks of memory scattered over a large space. When using a general-purpose processor, NRL scientists were able to measure that up to 90 percent of the memory accessed by the processor was wasted. The wasted memory accesses not only make the analysis run inefficiently, but also waste a significant amount of energy as well. Similarly, GPGPUs are not ideal candidates due to their inability to work with large memory footprints. Because of the memory wall exhibited by these processors, FPGAs were chosen as an alternative architecture to explore a more efficient implementation of the route analysis. NRL evaluated numerous candidate architectures to build an implementation that accessed memory with optimal efficiency. The Convey HC-2ex Hybrid Core computer was determined to be the best available option for implementation. This architecture consists of a set of general-purpose CPU hosts paired with a set of FPGA coprocessors. The FPGA co-processors are interfaced to separate high-speed physical memory than the host processors. This high-speed memory has a large capacity and may be accessed in small chunks, which is a good fit for routing analysis. The Hybrid Threading tool provided by Convey allowed for rapid prototyping of the FPGA design using a software interface. A collaborative effort between
Convey and NRL scientists yielded an effective processor design within three weeks. NRL carried out experiments to compare the Convey FPGA-based system to a conventional server node of equivalent form factor by using respective routing analysis implementations. The conventional implementation was executed on a high-end Dell server node with 64 cores, while the FPGA-based application was executed on a Convey HC-2ex with 4 FPGAs designed to have 64 cores. Results showed that for inputs containing over a million intersections, one Convey HC-2ex is five times faster than the general-purpose systems in completing the routing analysis. Though the FGPA system costs about 10 times that of a single server node, the savings in space, weight and power are enough to justify the cost. Moreover, the FPGA implementation still has of room for optimization. Heterogeneous computing with general-purpose CPUs, GPGPUs, and FPGAs enables computational capacity to keep up with the rate at which field-collected data is growing. However, as shown in our application example, it is not always clear which of the heterogeneous architectures to use. To solve this problem, the NRL Geospatial Computing group is developing a computing model that determines the most optimum heterogeneous system specification given a certain application workload. As a result of this research, deployed system designers will no longer need to rely on intuition and rough benchmarking to specify tactical computational systems and estimate their operational cost. By applying the NRL computational model, designers will be able to determine the best application implementation and resource mixes based on their mission requirements. The result will be improved processing timeliness and data dissemination. O Dr. Chris J. Michael, Dr. Elias Z. Ioup and Dr. John T. Sample are with the Naval Research Laboratory, Stennis Space Center, Miss.
For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly at firstname.lastname@example.org or search our online archives for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com.
GIF 12.2 | 21
Disaster Aid Confirms NGA Progress Long hails contribution of four critical strategic GEOINT integration initiatives to response to Philippine typhoon.
(Editorâ€™s Note: Following are edited excerpts from remarks by Letitia A. Long, director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, in a February 10, 2014, speech to Esri Federal GIS User Conference.) To optimize NGAâ€™s service for our customers, drive integration and deliver what GEOINT promises, we have four critical strategic initiatives underway: open IT; Map of the World; the Globe, our user experience; and advanced analytic techniques. All four of these support and reinforce each other, and we need to make progress on all four.
22 | GIF 12.2
The open IT initiative lays the infrastructure for the other three. NGA has adopted open IT standards and taken a lead role in the Intelligence Community Information Technology Enterprise [IC ITE] initiative. We are committed to that initiative and the equivalent in the Department of Defense, the Joint Information Enterprise. The success of NGA depends on the success of those initiatives. Showing the way toward the integrated enterprise, we moved to an open IT environment when we moved to our
new campus in 2011. Weâ€™ve been operating in the cloud since then, and our improvements have resulted in increases in productivity and user satisfaction, as well as the ability to integrate not only all types of geospatial intelligence, but also other INTs, as well as open source information. The next initiative, and ultimately the bedrock for intelligence integration, is the Map of the World [MoW]. In the past, you had to access multiple databases and search for hours for information. You first had to know where to look. But today, in a rapidly changing world, customers need immediate access. They shouldnâ€™t have to know where to go to get the information just to know that it is out there. So we have created a MoW to be the home for all GEOINT-related
and multi-source data, knowledge, analysis and reporting. The MoW provides a seamless, integrated environment, so that analysts can live within the data. They record their observations and integrate all of their information about any object of interest. You may wonder how this MoW differs from other maps of the world, or commercially available maps. Ours is all about national security, so it includes geospatial content that goes far beyond commercial offerings. It includes all of our classified information, detailed maritime and aviation safety data that is critical for conducting military operations. It includes our classified imagery. All of the intelligence is tailored for specific defense, IC and senior decision
GIF 12.2 | 23
maker requirements. We will have an instantiation on the Top Secret and Secret networks, and also on our unclassified network, but behind our firewall, so that those who need to have access will be able to. It will function for the foundation for intelligence integration, because the common elements of all of our data are location and time. Knowing where everything is located, and how it changes over time, is the province of GEOINT. Without quality service and easy access, however, the best content may not be useful to the customer. The heart of NGA’s customer experience is a single Web portal for access to all GEOINT data and knowledge. Ultimately, all of our information will be available at any time and from any location, through any desktop or mobile device. We call this online initiative the Globe. We realize that today we must provide an online experience similar to that of any commercial website, but rather than having an order system for a book or pizza, we have a far greater undertaking, which is to expose our data, analysis and knowledge so senior leaders can solve their hard problems, the military can plan safe and effective operations, and first responders can save lives. Through the Globe, users will gain access to the MoW and all of our GEOINT content. That content will be curated, or vetted for quality and usefulness. Our collaboration with partners during the response to Typhoon Haiyan shows the progress that we are making in delivering the content. As the typhoon gathered strength, we created an event page on our unclassified website, which enabled the international disaster response community to access all of our data, submit requests for that information, and share their data. Most importantly, the event page enabled our partners to see and use the damage assessments that were created as we created and updated them. One way we supported this was a groundbreaking step with the International Red Cross; for the first time, working under an agreement with the State Department and USAID, we were able to give the Red Cross open access to our information. Their field teams downloaded our data onto their tablets and smartphones, improving the accuracy of their ground truth, and were able to update that as they worked. In addition, thanks to our agreement with DigitalGlobe, we released for 30 days all of our related commercial imagery to everyone who needed it, which really made a difference to the Philippine government’s understanding of the situation on the ground. We also had unexpected users who took advantage of it to produce their own disaster relief products. First, we exposed our relevant data to our federal partner, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which then made it available to responders through their GeoPlatform map service, in partnership with the Federal Geographic Data Committee. After release, with pure self-service, a UN agency used our data for the first time ever to create multi-layered areas maps to get out to the UN community. PACOM, the U.S. military lead, made our data available to their public network that they use to share with their partners in the region. This is exactly what we are talking about—getting our information out there, openly accessible, so that those who need it can access it, add their information, provide it back to us, so we can serve it back out. I’m sure that data is still being used in ways we don’t even know. That shows how effective integration 24 | GIF 12.2
can be when you share your data, knowledge and analysis with your partners. The event page, the easy access and the ease of collaboration all point toward a quality user experience that we are developing through the Globe. Those three initiatives establish the vital underpinning for the ultimate purpose of our transformation, which is to deliver advanced geospatial intelligence insights and serve as the foundation of intelligence integration. We’ve gotten good at watching what we know and looking where we think we might find something. We have indicators, and are good at warning for the “known unknowns,” from the Cuban Missile Crisis to North Korean missile developments. But today’s crises, often sudden, rapidly evolving and influenced by social media, mean that we can no longer do analysis that way. Instead, we must focus on discovering the “unknown unknowns” that are hidden in the masses of data that are created every day, and discover them more quickly than before. One way of getting at these unknowns is through an advanced analytic tradecraft that we are pioneering, called activity based intelligence. Using big data analytics, automated processing, our ABI tradecraft, we are discovering critical surprises hidden in masses of data, as well as secrets that our adversaries are trying to hide. Automated processing frees the analyst to think more deeply, answer intelligence questions more quickly, and generate new perspectives for customers. The result is more decision space and deeper insight, so our policymakers and warfighters can determine better courses of action. Success of our transformation depends on the success of all four of these initiatives, which are all interdependent. They are so critical that we have realigned hundreds of millions of dollars across our budget for the next five years to support them. We’re killing off programs that aren’t taking the direction we want to go, and moving that money into investments that will drive us to achieve our planned future state in 2018—a fully integrated GEOINT enterprise. We’ve laid out our strategy and are making tremendous progress, but there are challenges. For industry, we need help in developing these critical capabilities—technology solutions that will give access to the MoW in remote environments; automated production of standard maps and charts for the MoW; and technology that automatically collects video from trusted users and partners. But you have to determine the trusted users and partners, so we need identity management in order to match users and their credentials, and give them access for what is appropriate for them to have. We also need a fast editing capability, so that we can rapidly update our digital map data in a crisis. For the government, I urge adoption of the Open Geospatial Consortium standards for your data. Meta-tag your data, and expose it and make it accessible. If it’s not out there for others to use, you’re not realizing the full value of that data. Expose your apps and analysis. Let us expand collaboration and integration beyond the IC and DoD, to other federal, state and local governments as appropriate. O
For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly at email@example.com or search our online archives for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com.
Advanced Exploitation Competition Small-business-led industry teams bid for Air Force intelligence center GEOINT and MASINT contract. By Harrison Donnelly GIF Editor
An estimated six industry teams are competing for a contract to provide the Air Force and key members of the intelligence community with nearly $1 billion in advanced GEOINT and measurement and signature intelligence (MASINT) technology and services. The contract, known as the Advanced Technical Exploitation Program II (ATEP II), is expected to be awarded this summer by the Air Force National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC), which is based at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. Industry observers anticipate that up to four of the teams, each of which is led by a small business prime contractor, will be selected. Selection for the ATEP II contract will enable teams to compete for $120 million in task orders each year for eight years, www.GIF-kmi.com
for GEOINT services that include synthetic aperture radar, overhead persistent infrared (OPIR), light detection and ranging, ground moving target indicator, thermal infrared, multispectral/hyperspectral, and full motion video, as well as such MASINT technologies as electro-optical, over-the-horizon radar, line-of-sight radar, and radio frequency data sources. The contract competition has attracted considerable attention both because of the size of the contract and because of the critical role played by NASIC, which serves not only the Air Force and other military branches, but also provides vital services to major intelligence agencies. In addition, the contract process has also been noteworthy in reflecting a broader ongoing debate about the potential role of small business in developing and sustaining GIF 12.2 | 25
vice president, C4ISR networked systems, Northrop Grumman advanced technology. Although the current ATEP contract has Electronic Systems. been held by industry teams led by major corporations—Ball Northrop Grumman specializes in satellite and radar processAerospace, General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems and ing, with more than 40 years of experience in processing OPIR Northrop Grumman Information Systems—the new contract data, which is a key aspect of NASIC’s mission. The company requires that the prime contractor on each team be a company brings experience specifically in GEOINT and MASINT, which with fewer than 1,500 employees. includes planning and direction, collection, processing and exploiThe Air Force’s small business approach has drawn questions tation, analysis and production, and dissemination activities. from contrasting perspectives. Some in Congress and industry “Having Northrop Grumman on the ATEP II Team will help have asked whether the program’s scope, scale, complexity and us provide an unparalleled level of support to the NASIC mission,” mission criticality made it a good choice for small business parsaid David W. Ross, assistant vice president of Dayton, Ohio, operaticipation at the prime sponsor level. On the other hand, small tions for Radiance Technologies. business representatives have argued that the program should be Another major competitor is Team Integrity, a 19-member limited to even smaller-sized companies, and sought unsuccessalliance led by Integrity Applications Inc. (IAI), a 600-employee fully through a federal appeals process to bring that about. engineering and software company with a focus Analysts say the Air Force policy represents a on Government space and intelligence surveillance middle course aimed at fostering entrepreneurial reconnaissance systems activities. The team also innovation while reducing the risk that the governincludes MacAulay-Brown and Woolpert, both of ment would be left reliant for vital services on firms which are based near NASIC’s Dayton, Ohio, headthat might have shaky finances or limited expertise. quarters, as well as Leidos and General Dynamics The current and future ATEP contracts call for a Advanced Information Systems. broad and complex range of services involving some Team Integrity can deliver the types of services of the most advanced intelligence technology. For that NASIC is looking for, ranging from high end ATEP II, within each of 12 GEOINT and MASINT research and development support to operations, technical mission areas, contractors must be able to sustainment and production, according to Robert D. provide three different kinds of support. Robert D. Thomas Thomas, vice president, analytical services for IAI. The first is operations support, in which the con“From our perspective, IAI is a company that is strong in most tractor provides analysts who work onsite at NASIC, doing day-toof the sensors and phenomenologies,” Thomas said. “But our parday analysis of data that is collected in each of the mission areas. ticularly strong suit is on the R&D side, where we have a lot of talThe analysts produce time-critical intelligence products by perented people with advanced degrees. That’s the piece of the puzzle forming highly technical analysis of data collected by sensors that we fill, and then we have others on our team that are good at hosted on ground, air and space-based platforms. production, sustainment and other aspects.” The second type of support is development and sustainment of “Our roots and relationships in the specific phenomenologies end-to-end systems and software tools that allow analysts to anaare key to the NASIC customer. We have folks that work within lyze the data. the IC and DoD organizations that NASIC leans on, partners with The third activity, which is in many ways the most important and supports. to NASIC, is the basic research that underlies the development of We have lots of folks that are part of IAI that came out of that the systems and software tools. This requires expertise in sensor community, whether active duty or civil service scientific support. design, remote sensing phenomenology and advanced signal proWe’re familiar with NASIC, and also its position in supporting not cessing techniques. only the Air Force and other services, but also the other IC organizations,” Thomas said. Team Line-ups After competing to be selected for a prime award for the indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract, winning teams will then By lowering the size limit for ATEP-II, the Air Force spurred have to respond effectively to win individual task orders under the a reshuffling of the teams performing on the current contract, as Air Force’s two-phase award process. each of the three prime contractors sought a smaller partner to In selecting teams for the prime contract, Air Force officials lead its team in the competition. Although the teams generally are have indicated that they will use lowest-price technically accepttreating their membership line-ups as proprietary, it is possible to able criteria, under which the government first identifies all conidentify some of the key players. tenders able to perform the work within acceptable standards Ball Aerospace, for example, went through a lengthy selection of performance, and then selects the lowest-price bidders from process before joining with Invertix Corp. as prime contractor. A those. Air Force officials have vowed to do a rigorous job in measpecialist in cloud-based big data analysis, Invertix subsequently suring technical acceptability. After the ATEP II contracts are merged with Near Infinity, another small company, to form awarded, each of the winning primes will be competing for task Altamira Technologies Corporation. orders, which the government plans to award using a best value Northrop Grumman, meanwhile, joined a team led by Radiance approach. O Technologies, a provider of GEOINT, MASINT and other services to the IC and Department of Defense. For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly “This teaming arrangement greatly advances the objective at firstname.lastname@example.org or search our online archives of ATEP II and the mission of NASIC by offering them cuttingfor related stories at www.gif-kmi.com. edge technology, innovation and experience,” said Edward Bush, 26 | GIF 12.2
GIF RESOURCE CENTER
Compiled by KMI Media Group staff
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Calendar March 23-28, 2014 Geospatial Power in Our Pockets Louisville, Ky. www.asprs.org/conferences April 14-17, 2014 GEOINT Symposium Tampa, Fla. http://usgif.org
May 5-9, 2014 SPIE Defense Security & Sensing Exhibition Baltimore, Md. www.spie.org May 12-15, 2014 AUVSI Unmanned Systems Orlando, Fla. www.auvsishow.org
May 19-22, 2014 Space Symposium Colorado Springs, Colo. www.spacefoundation.org May 19-21, 2014 Location Intelligence Washington, D.C. www.locationintelligence.net
April 2014 Volme 12, Issue 3
The Voice of Military Communications and Computing
Cover and In-Depth Interview with:
Doug McGovern Director, InnoVision NGA
Features: • Special Report: NGA Program Review • Map of the World • Special Ops GEOINT • Modeling and Simulation • National Security IT
Bonus Distribution GEOINT Symposium April 14-17, 2014 Tampa, Fla.
Insertion Order Deadline: March 25, 2014 • Ad Material Deadline: April 1, 2014
GIF 12.2 | 27
Geospatial Intelligence Forum
Richard Cooke Vice President Geospatial Intelligence Solutions Exelis Q: Tell us about yourself and how you joined Exelis VIS. A: I joined Exelis in 2000 and currently hold the position of vice president for the Geospatial Intelligence Solutions business at Exelis Geospatial Systems. Previously, I served as the president of the company’s subsidiary, Exelis Visual Information Solutions (Exelis VIS). Before being appointed as president of Exelis VIS in January 2002, I was the vice president of engineering and information technology with the company. My breadth of roles with Exelis gives me a unique perspective on the geospatial market, having grown with the company as the industry has evolved as a whole. Ultimately, my role at Exelis remains the same. I am responsible for creating the vision for, and bringing to market, software technologies that facilitate advances in geospatial data acquisition, analysis and dissemination to the people who need it to make more informed decisions. Q: ENVI products are the flagship of Exelis VIS. What are some of the more recent developments? A: ENVI was groundbreaking in helping forward deployed military and intelligence specialists plan and execute successful missions. Now, we are leveraging the larger Exelis organization to create and deliver software solutions that utilize geospatial data to solve problems across the defense and intelligence chain. In other words, our ENVI products are still core; they are the advanced analytic capabilities that are part of a larger, more integrated web-based system that delivers technology for ingesting, managing, discovering and disseminating remotely sensed and other geographically contextual data. This system, Jagwire, has been field-tested and is currently being used in several military and intelligence programs. ENVI tools are still available as a complete desktop package, but we are now making those capabilities available in a more flexible way. Q: How important is partnering with other companies, most recently Skybox Imaging 28 | GIF 12.2
and larger initiatives such as Esri, key to your company’s success? A: Exelis believes partnering with others in the industry who deliver complementary products and technology is ultimately beneficial to our customers. Our customers are looking for solutions, and they want those of us in the industry to solve them by working together to integrate what we respectively do best. For example, Exelis developed a close partnership with Esri years ago, and that has resulted in our products being seamlessly integrated. Our coincident customers recognize countless benefits—programs that save time, money and resources by investing a single system, rather than multiple software solutions. The end-user also has a much more streamlined workflow and can produce better results, faster. In the case of data providers, Exelis recently established a new relationship with Skybox, in addition to our longstanding partnerships with other leading providers in the industry. Q: What unique benefits does your company provide its customers in comparison to similar geospatial companies? A: The Jagwire solution from Exelis makes the discovery, management and dissemination of geospatial data and video easier than ever. Jagwire is a force multiplier and an intelligence aggregator. With a Web-enabled, single, unified interface for accessing multiple modalities, INT types and other geospatial intelligence, Jagwire provides a single solution for the processing, ingestion, management, discovery and dissemination of still imagery, full motion video and other geospatial intelligence products from manned and unmanned ISR and ground-based sensors, regardless of where the data resides. Exelis has adapted to
changing technologies and the DoD missions it supports by developing the next generation Jagwire solution to provide analysts, special operators and decision makers in DoD and the intelligence community access to multiple imaging modalities from a Web-enabled user interface. The software solution eliminates the need for administering and accessing multiple, disparate systems. Jagwire’s fully integrated capabilities significantly improve situational awareness, further reducing the time and complexity of getting critical and time-sensitive data out to the tactical edge and back. Q: How do you see the role of GEOINT changing for the defense and intelligence communities? A: The need for interoperability and openstandards is key to creating a truly collaborative GEOINT environment. Ultimately, critical GEOINT information needs to be available to users on demand, anywhere in the world. At Exelis, we are architecting our products to seamlessly fit into cloud-based infrastructures. This in turn enables our users to collaborate in support of critical operations. Also, technologies from the commercial world that enable advanced and anticipatory analytics from both traditional and unstructured data types, such as social media, will be critical to the delivery of richer insights from GEOINT data, reduce analysts’ workloads, automate critical intelligence gathering processes and reduce time from collection to actionable information. Q: What will Exelis be showcasing and talking about at the upcoming GEOINT Symposium? A: Exelis looks forward to showcasing the company’s ISR and analytics solutions in Booth 3035 at this year’s GEOINT 2013* Symposium & Exhibition, April 14-17, 2014, in Tampa, Fla. In addition to our ENVI and Jagwire solutions, Exelis will feature our wide area motion imagery surveillance solution, which observes activity, tracks movement and gathers critical intelligence over a wide area. O www.GIF-kmi.com
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