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Wide Area Persistent Surveillance (WAPS) Activities

The NGA Motion Imagery Tradecraft Working Group (MITWG) is a collaborative government/industry working group focused on the challenges of collecting, storing, retrieving, processing, and analyzing large volumes of motion imagery for the development of intelligence and for the support of military operations. MITWG participation will be open to all government and industry individuals who wish to participate. Meetings will be held both at the unclassified and secret levels. Meetings will be held approximately twice a year. MITWG's mission focus is on the exploitation of airborne motion imagery Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) data from platforms such as the USAF Predator, the USA FCS Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), the USN Rotorcraft UAV and Wide Area Persistent Surveillance (WAPS) systems, also known as Large Volume Streaming Data (LVSD).

In March 2008 Dr. Mel Kruer, a senior scientist in the Optical Sciences Division (OSD) at the Naval Research Laboratory, was a recipient of the Presidential Rank Award for Meritorious Senior Professionals. According to the award nomination, "Dr. Kruer spearheaded the revolution of the Navy's imaging reconnaissance systems from the old era of photographic film and wet chemical developing to the new age of electronic imaging and digital signal processing. His performance has consistently shown that his primary interest is not only developing new technology, but also transitioning it to the fleet. Dr. Kruer has been recognized nationally and internationally as a major contributor to and leader in advanced staring infrared detector arrays and advanced military electro-optical sensors."

Dr. Kruer's recent efforts include the development of a nighttime wide area persistent surveillance system (WAPSS) to detect activity associated with the placement of IEDs. He is also working a new compact hyperspectral sensor capability implemented in a ball gimbal with associated compact real-time signal processors and operator interfaces. This program is scheduled to deliver a rapid prototype hyperspectral gimbal sensor to the intelligence community in about 18 months. These activities support the Global War on Terror, Improved Combat Capability, and Rapid Technology Insertion for Future Challenges, and have direct application to homeland security.

On September 23, 2008 Congresswoman Melissa Bean (IL-08) announced that the House will vote on legislation that includes funding she requested in H.R. 2638, The Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance, and Continuing Appropriations Act. The bill includes funding Bean requested for the following projects.

Wide Area Sensor for Force Protection Targeting for manned and unmanned aircraft surveillance for the U.S. Navy: $1,600,000 for developing the wide area sensor program to build a deployable day/night, wide-area, persistent surveillance system to provide real-time surveillance for combat troops in theater. These technologies will be integrated into a comprehensive surveillance system suitable for manned, or unmanned, and long endurance missions.

Ultra-Wide Coverage Visible Near Infrared Sensor for Force Protection for the U.S. Navy: $1,200,000 for developing, integrating and demonstrating a new visible/near infrared sensor that would be used for airborne persistence surveillance. The advanced sensor technologies will be incorporated to include high resolution, high quantum efficiency, very large format visible / near IR detectors coupled with high fidelity, geo-spatially accurate optics. These technologies will be integrated into a comprehensive surveillance system suitable for manned, or unmanned, and long endurance missions.




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