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Space Mission Technologies (U)

(U) The Space Mission Technologies Thrust seeks to improve booster detection sensitivity, coverage, worldwide detection, and tracking capability for missiles and warheads in midcourse and terminal ballistic flights. Specific areas of consideration are:
1. (U) Ballistic Missile Defense/Command, Control, and Communications (BMD/C3) - advanced mid- and long-wavelength focal plane arrays, multicolor focal plane arrays; and
2. (U) Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) - space based theater surveillance, high performance passive sensors and hyperspectral sensors.

(U) Many Air Force Space Command (AFSPC) and Air Combat Command (ACC) Mission Area Plans and corresponding development plans identify the need for survivable, affordable C3 capability worldwide. Lightweight, high efficiency satellite communication is a key feature of the architecture needed to provide the need for such capabilities.

(U) Ballistic Missile Defense needs for improved sensors for boost and midcourse targets are given in Joint Chiefs of Staff Memorandum, Joint Ballistic Missile Defense Operational Requirements, USCINCSPACE Operational Requirements for Phase I Strategic Ballistic Missile Defense, JROCM 064-91 and AF MNS 004-91.

(U) This Thrust places emphasis on passive space sensors, active space sensors, and satellite communications. The goal for passive sensors is to reduce development costs, weight, and power consumption; increase reliability, sensitivity, and resolution; and enhance affordability. This will be achieved by:
1. (U) development of a new generation of improved, highly sensitive detectors to provide reliable missile warning by detection of dim targets, increased detection range, and improved clutter suppression;
2. (U) development of multicolor detectors that will simplify sensor design resulting in significantly lower power requirements and lower weight; and
3. (U) development of low power infrared detector readout electronics to reduce sensor spacecraft power requirements by more than half and radiator weight by hundreds of pounds, improving the affordability and operability of space based missile warning and reconnaissance and surveillance satellites.

(U) The goal for active sensors is to identify, develop and transition key technologies for affordable, non-deniable, broad area, all-weather surveillance systems supporting Global Reach/Global Power. Additionally, space based command and control of theater assets, using these surveillance systems will be advanced through this initiative. This will be achieved by:
1. (U) developing Advanced Onboard Processing & Control technologies for data reduction, advanced signal processing, automatic target recognition, sensor fusion, and cross cueing, ensuring timely availability of reconnaissance and surveillance products to the tactical war fighter.

2. (U) The development of large, lightweight, multi-mode/band/phenomenology antennas for space based military reconnaissance and surveillance missions and commercial dual-use applications.

3. (U) developing sensor characterization modeling and simulation capabilities, including a radar clutter database for selecting alternate sensor suites and components and for driving selected technology developments from a system perspective.

(U) The goal for Satellite Communications is to identify, develop, and transition affordable, high data rate technologies. This will be achieved by:
1. (U) leveraging high efficiency, lightweight component and signal processing technology (DoD & commercial) to reduce the weight, volume and power requirements of space communication systems by more than half;
2. (U) making highly mobile and transportable services available to tactical forces;
3. (U) helping provide affordable C3 capability for worldwide theater operations.

Related Initiatives (U):
Space SensorsSpace Sensors
This Table Is Unclassified.

Related Categories (U):
Space and Missile TechnologySpace and Missile Technology
This Table Is Unclassified.

Road Map Placements (U):

This Table Is Unclassified.

Requirements, Funding and Additional Hotlinks (U):

Technology Master Process
This Table Is Unclassified.

Date Of Information (U):

(U) 21 November 1997

(U) Road Map Production Date: 12 July 1999

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