20 March 2001. With thanks to Sp.


March 2001 �SIGNAL Magazine 2001

Commercial Eyes on the Battlefield Sharpen Focus

Multispectral data add versatility to high-resolution satellite imagery.

By Robert K. Ackerman

"Sensor fusion is taking place within the commercial remote sensing arena as military users combine different forms of satellite imagery to generate advanced intelligence and mission planning products. This imagery also is being combined with data from diverse sources such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and topographical archives to redefine geospatial information. A cornerstone of the military's commercial imagery exploitation is the U.S. Air Force's Eagle Vision. Originally built around using imagery from France's Spot satellite acquired by a Matra groundstation, the program now can tap many of the new commercial remote sensing satellites that have reached orbit over the past few years. And, computer and electronics advances have reduced the size of the system's equipment to enhance mobility and increase versatility..."

...Eagle Vision's original goal was simply to speed satellite imagery into the hands of the warfighter (SIGNAL, June 1995, page 15). The keys to this achievement were mobile downlink capabilities and access to high-resolution commercial remote sensing data. Now, however, its capabilities have been enhanced by a plethora of new and different commercial remote sensing satellites combined with mission planning systems that can wrap the imagery around terrain data for true three-dimensional (3-D) dynamic models."