Thursday, May 8, 2008

DARPA's Military Mission & University Connections--Part 4

(See Parts 1-3 below)

In a March 25, 2004 statement before the House Committee on Armed Services’ Subcommittee on “Terrorism, Unconventional Threats and Capabilities,” the Director of DARPA, Dr. Anthony Tether, also indicated some specific military applications of the DARPA-funded research work that is currently done on U.S. university campuses at places like Columbia:

“DARPA’s sensor work is exemplified by the Standoff Precision Identification in Three Dimensions (SPI-3D) program to develop an airborne LIDAR sensor to provide positive target identification from standoff ranges via high resolution three-dimensional representations. SPI-3D will be cued by wide area surveillance sensors, such as synthetic aperture radar, which can determine the presence of possible targets but may be unable to confirm target type or identity. SPI-3D technology will close this gap, allowing commanders to positively identify targets as needed by our rules of engagement.

“The National/Tactical Exploitation (NYTEX) program uses imagery and data from both national reconnaissance systems and tactical assets to locate and identify enemy air defense units. During Operation Iraqi Freedom, NYTEX supported our forces in Iraq by screening synthetic aperture radar imagery to look for enemy air defense emplacements.

“Other DARPA programs have performed significant demonstrations. These programs have located short-duration smitters with high accuracy; detected dismounted soldiers moving through trees; identified ground vehicles from acoustic/seismic sensor networks; maintained track on designated vehicles through obscured terrain; and delivered precision munitions to destroy moving tanks and trucks from 30 kilometers away.”

Next: DARPA’s Military Mission & University Connections—Part 5