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Air and Missile Defense group to host industry day.

With approximately 5,000 commercial, general and military aviation aircraft flying over the United States at any given time, just keeping track of them all is a job, but being able to pinpoint a bad actor is the really tough challenge.

According to Capt Rick Easton, deputy director for operations at the Joint Theater Air and Missile Defense Organization (JTAMDO), the key "is to insure that U.S. airspace is not used as an avenue of attack and to keep aircraft from becoming weapons or weapons delivery platforms for terrorists."

A large part of the counter terrorism effort has been focused on air security, to prevent a repeat of the September 11 attacks. But Barry Fridling, deputy and technical director of JTAMDO, points out that terrorists can use more than airliners for an attack. He references a recent news article about a New Zealand man who is building his own cruise missile. Reuters reported that a New Zealand handyman "with a passion for jet engines says he is building a cruise missile in his backyard using parts and technology freely available over the Internet."

Obviously, the United States wants to avert another September 11, says Fridling, "but it doesn't make sense to ignore the rest of the threats out there. We have to build a system that can address the full spectrum, from airliners to unconventional air threats and cruise missiles. And that means the military and law enforcement have to work hand in glove."

JTAMDO has been the lead Defense Department agency during the past five years for joint air defense concepts and cruise missile defense. Following the September 11 attacks, JTAMDO was directed to apply its knowledge and expertise in air defense, future technologies and joint operations to the homeland air defense mission

An Interagency Homeland Security team made up of operational, policy and senior management representatives from across federal agencies has been working over the past year and a half to address a host of issues, chief among them the air surveillance and integration of military and law enforcement operations.

One of the key products from this effort is the Interagency Homeland Security operational concept. "The IHAS Concept provides a framework for operations and a common vision on where we want to go in the future," says Easton. "Getting all the agencies hands-on involvement in writing the concept ensured we didn't miss something critical, but just as importantly, the day-to-day working environment built new working relationships among agencies that historically have not had a need to work together."

To make the IHAS concept a reality "we need the capability to effectively monitor and control the airspace so that we can distinguish between an inadvertent pilot deviation and a hostile cruise missile or hijacked airliner, and we have to do it without shutting down the nation's air commerce," says Rear Adm. Mike Mathis, director of JTAMDO. "We are in a war against terrorism and our part in that war is to help build the best air security system possible."

Coordinated law enforcement and military actions, and the efficient flow of information among the many agencies involved are critical to the successful execution of the air security mission.

To help develop and mature inter-agency procedures and identify new technologies, JTAMDO is undertaking a three-year National Capital Region (NCR) demonstration project under Fridling's direction. Central themes of the demonstration are the air surveillance picture, data sharing and communications, intelligence and decision aids.

"These are areas where current or emerging technologies are expected to add significant operational value," says Fridling. Specific areas of interest for the demonstration are:

* Air surveillance picture of sufficient commonality and quality across the appropriate agencies is needed to enable the detection of abnormal activities, and capable of supporting the full range of subsequent decisions and actions. The air picture must be timely and accurate enough to provide decision makers with the confidence to make event declarations and interdiction decisions.

* Data sharing and communications should be based on information exchange that enables voice and data flow among the agencies at the federal, state and local levels. The goal is to facilitate communication throughout the responding forces and across the agencies, without relying on a serial relay process from platform-to-platform or agency-to-agency.

* Intelligence must involve a "push-pull" system among agencies that ensures all relevant information on terrorist activities is gathered, correlated and cross-referenced. The goal is early detection to prevent an air attack before takeoff, or failing that, to provide decision makers with real-time, accurate information to support decisions on interdiction.

* Decision aids are needed for the automated processing and correlation of flight, intelligence, and/or law enforcement information/data to provide tactical and management level personnel with the ability to identify "tracks of interest" from the 5,000 aircraft in the air at any given time and assist them in determining its intent, recommend courses of action, projected outcomes and consequences based on the situation, threat, and response assets available.

A Homeland Air Security Industry Day in September will be an important piece of the JTAMDO demonstration, says Fridling. The purpose of the industry day is two-fold. First, to provide industry with an understanding of homeland air security operations, concepts, and desired capabilities and characteristics as developed by the Interagency community over the last two years.

Secondly, JTAMDO will be soliciting white papers from industry on technologies or systems that could be applied to the mission area. JTAMDO is funded through fiscal year 2006 to conduct a series of demonstrations in the NCR where selected programs from the Industry Day will be evaluated.

The Homeland Air Security Industry Day is a classified (secret, U.S.-only) conference being hosted by NDIA on September 10 at the Kossiakoff Center, in Maryland.

NDIA Leadership

Board of Directors

James L. Pierce

Chairman & CEO, ARINC Incorporated

NDIA Chairman of the Board

Thomas I. Culligan

Executive Vice President for Business Development, Raytheon

NDIA Vice Chairman of the Board

Senior Staff

Lawrence P. Farrell, Jr., Lt. Gen., USAF (Ret.)

President, Chief Executive Officer, and Publisher

Barry D. Bates, Maj. Gen., USA (Ret.)

Vice President, Operations

James E. McInerney Jr., Maj. Gen., USAF (Ret.)

Vice President, Membership & Chapters

Peter M. Steffes

Vice President, Government Policy

Bronislaw P. Prokuski Jr., Col., USAF (Ret.)

Vice President, Administration and Finance Secretary/Treasurer

Dina Pignotti

Vice President, Advertising

Paul Greenberg, Maj. Gen., USA (Ret.)

Vice President Emeritus


David Chesebrough

AFEI President

Frederick L. Lewis, Rear Adm., USN (Ret.)

NTSA Executive Director

Janice M. Menker

Women In Defense President

Paul Greenberg, Maj. Gen., USA (Ret.)

Executive Director

Precision Strike Association

William R. Usher, Maj. Gen., USAF (Ret.)


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Title Annotation:ndia news
Publication:National Defense
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2003
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