11 June 1998
Source: http://afpubs.hq.af.mil/elec-products/pubs/af/14/14021000/14021000.pdf (2.2MB full document)




[Excerpt, pp. 141-146]


Attachment 3


A3.1. Human Intelligence (HUMINT).

HUMINT refers to all information obtained directly from human sources. It includes a wide range of activities from direct reconnaissance and observation to the use of informants and spies. HUMINT may provide such information as insights into adversary plans and intentions for target development, adversary deliberations and decisions for developing our own objec-tives, research and development goals and strategies, blueprints for weaponeering, etc. Some intelligence requirements can best be satisfied by human source exploitation.

A3.1.1. HUMINT includes overt, sensitive, and clandestine activities and the individuals who exploit, control, supervise, or support these sources.
A3.1.1.1. Overt activities are performed openly without concealment. While some aspects may be classified, the overall activity is generally easily detected, or the sources are exploited in an open but discrete manner. Some overt HUMINT activities are: conventional programs for the interrogation of ÈmigrÈs, refugees, escapees, and prisoners of war; debriefing aircrews and legal travelers; and programs to exploit open publications.

A3.1.1.2. Sensitive activities fall between overt and clandestine. Because their disclosure would be detrimental to the best interests of the United States, they require special protection from disclosure, as well as concealment of the sponsor's identity.

A3.1.1.3. Clandestine activities must be conducted so that both the existence of the operation itself and the identity of the sponsor are secret.

A3.1.2. Advantages of HUMINT:

• Can be used to reveal enemy plans and intentions and uncover scientific or weapon developments before they are used or detected by other technical collection systems

• Can provide documentary evidence of enemy activities

• Relatively cost effective

• May provide coverage in areas beyond the capabilities of other sources, such as detailed descriptions of underground facilities or those located below jungle canopy, as well as internal facility arrangements

• Can reveal construction characteristics for vulnerability estimates

• Can determine production capabilities and impact of facilities on enemy military and industrial needs

• Yields information on the sources of raw materials, equipment, and necessary transportation for systems analysis

• May reveal direct and indirect relationships between facilities

• Can give near-real-time target intelligence via radio transmission

• Can cover targets against which sensor programs are restricted by political restraints

• Targeteer can use it to refine or revise intelligence estimates based on other sources of information; helps the analyst learn identification and functions previously unidentified, as well as give direct and indirect effects of airstrikes during hostilities


A3.1.3. Limitations of HUMINT:
• Time lag between collection, reporting, and verifying some information can be so long AND render it useless

• Collection success cannot be predicted with certainty

• May be politically sensitive

• Dissemination and fusion of information into targeting channels is often inadequate and difficult to accomplish

• Determining reliability of the source and verifying the information is often very difficult

A3.2. Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) .

SIGINT is a category of intelligence comprising, either individually or in combination, all communications intelligence (COMINT), electronics intelligence (ELINT), and foreign instrumentation signals intelligence, however transmitted. It is derived from foreign communications and electronics signals in two principal categories: COMINT, which is derived from the intercept of foreign communications; and ELINT, which is derived from the analysis of foreign noncommunications and electromagnetic radiation emitted from other than nuclear detonations or radioactive sources.

A3.2.1. NSA is responsible for the US SIGINT program. Each military service has a service cryptological agency, operationally directed by NSA through the Central Security Service (CSS), to ensure missions are properly assigned and duplication of effort is avoided. In the Air Force, this mission is assigned to Air Intelligence Agency (AIA). The Army Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM) and the Naval Security Group (NSG) make up the remaining agencies of the military NSA and CSS structure. The Director of NSA also serves as Chief of CSS.

A3.2.2. SIGINT has many uses, but its application requires a thorough knowledge of the product. Order of battle depends heavily on correlation and analysis of COMINT and ELINT. Mission route planning requires current intelligence on enemy defensive positions and capabilities. Targets can be detected and located through airborne direction finding techniques. Intelligence concerning enemy operational plans may be obtained through signal analysis or cryptologic procedures. Confirmation of other types of intelligence can be made by targeting personnel with the aid of SIGINT reports. Finally, post strike or attack data and damage resulting from missions may also be obtained.

A3.2.3. Advantages of SIGINT:

• Potential for almost instantaneous information

• Can sometimes reveal specific information on enemy units

• Levels of activity and significant changes in these levels can often be determined

• Organizational structure and order of battle may be obtained

• Can cue other systems

• Equipment capability can be learned

• Emitter location can be approximated or pinpointed (dependent on accuracy capability of the system)

• Site function can be determined

A3.2.4. Limitations of SIGINT:


• Data may be denied by use of secure communications

• False information may be passed by the enemy for deception purposes

• Collection subject to atmospheric conditions

• Locations derived from SIGINT may be imprecise

• Specially configured collection platforms required

• Use of SIGINT collection platforms requires extensive coordination between collectors and users

A3.3. Measurement and Signature Intelligence (MASINT) .

MASINT is obtained by quantitative and qualitative analysis of data (metric, angle, spatial, wave length, time dependent, modulation, plasma, and hydromagnetic) derived from sensing instruments other than those generally used for communications, electronics intelligence, or imagery collection.

A3.3.1. MASINT includes but is not limited to the following disciplines:
• Radar intelligence (RADINT)

• Nuclear intelligence (NUCINT)

• Unintentional radiation intelligence (RINT)

• Acoustic intelligence (non compressible fluids (ACINT), compressible fluids (ACOUSTINT)

• Electro-optical intelligence (ELECTRO-OPTINT)

• Event-related dynamic measurement photography (DMPINT)

• Debris collection

• Laser Intelligence (LASINT)

A3.3.2. Telemetry Intelligence (TELINT) is technical information and intelligence information derived from the intercept, processing, and analysis of foreign telemetry and is a special category of signals intelligence. TELINT gathers quantitative data on foreign missiles and space and aerodynamic vehicles. TELINT and other foreign instrumentation signals (FIS) collection needs are expressed as MASINT requirements.

A3.3.3. The term MASINT refers to the above categories of special sensor disciplines. The term "measurement" refers primarily to data collected for the purpose of obtaining finite metric parameters. For the most part, the characteristics of collection instruments used are irrelevant to the data. Typical examples of data are reentry vehicle trajectory, beta, and drag history. The term "signature" refers primarily to data indicating the distinctive features of phenomena, equipment, or objects as they are sensed by the collection instrument. The signature is used to recognize the phenomena, equipment, or object when their distinctive features are detected.

A3.3.4. Advantages of MASINT:

• Can provide cues for other collection sensors or strike systems

• Potential for near instantaneous display capability exists

• Information can be obtained from the periphery of areas of interest

• Because it works in different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum, MASINT detects information patterns not previously exploited by other sensors


A3.3.5. Limitations of MASINT:
• Sources and information are technical and difficult to use

• Subject to deception

• Full exploitation is costly, requires extensive support facilities, and may require near continuous coverage and extensive coordination among participants

• Source locations may be imprecise

A3.4. Unattended Ground Sensors (UGS).

A3.4.1. The conflict in Southeast Asia brought about the development and use of this unique intelligence source. These sensors were developed using technology derived from sonobuoys used by the Navy for antisubmarine warfare (ASW) and from intrusion detectors developed for the Army. Sensor technologies are typically categorized as acoustic, seismic, magnetic, electromagnetic, or electro-optical.
A3.4.1.1. Acoustic sensors sense the acoustic energy (sound waves) emitted by a potential target. They allow analysts to calculate the target's position by measuring the time of arrival of sound waves at several known sensor locations; to identify or classify targets based on the emitted acoustic energy; or to monitor sounds or conversations.

A3.4.1.2. Seismic sensors detect or measure seismic disturbances generated by moving vehicles or personnel. They can be used to cue other, higher resolution sensors (for example, acoustic or electro-optical sensors) and identify or classify targets.

A3.4.1.3. Magnetic sensors detect changes in the ambient magnetic field caused by the movement or presence of metallic objects. Their range is extremely short, but they can be used to cue other, higher resolution sensors and to identify or classify targets.

A3.4.1.4. Electromagnetic sensors detect target emitted electromagnetic radiation. Such sensors depend on target self-emission, target motion, or conversion of mechanical disturbance into electromagnetic radiation.

A3.4.1.5. Electro-optical sensors systems image potential targets to detect, locate, and identify them. The most common are unattended infra red (IR) ground sensors, although sensors detecting in the visible light end of the spectrum have also been investigated.

A3.4.2. Advantages of unattended ground sensors:

• Great growth potential as intelligence sources

• Can detect movement and activity patterns not previously exploited by other sensors

• Can detect and relay actual sounds

• Have a nearly instantaneous intelligence capability

• Cue other sensors

A3.4.3. Limitations of unattended ground sensors:

• Must be placed by other systems

• Environment affects the sensor

• Expensive, sophisticated, and secure relay equipment is required


• A sophisticated analysis support system is required

• Sensors must be concealed

A3.4.4. Unattended sea sensors can provide valuable support to tactical air forces conducting sea interdiction and reconnaissance or surveillance operations. Potential sea sensor roles, advantages, and limitations are generally the same as those for unattended ground sensors.

A3.5. Imagery.

Collectively, imagery is the representation of objects reproduced optically or electronically on film, electronic display devices, or other media. Imagery comes from visual photography, radar sensors such as sidelooking airborne radar (SLAR), infrared sensors, lasers, and electro-optics. While each sensor operates at different spectrum frequencies and each type of imagery has distinctive characteristics, the advantages and limitations of each are similar.

A3.5.1. Advantages:
• A variety of platforms and media is available

• Capable of pinpoint target positioning

• Activity can be detected

• Order of battle can be counted

• Target characteristics (physical or environmental) can be studied in detail

• Large area collection possible

• Excellent resolution possible

• Highly credible because it can be seen by the user

A3.5.2. Limitations:

• Except for radar, imagery quality normally degraded by darkness, adverse weather.

• Subject to deception or concealment techniques

• Requires extensive support facilities

• Can be expensive

• Subject to misinterpretation or misidentification

• Situation represented on the image may exist only for the instant it was captured

A3.6. Scientific and Technical (S&T) Intelligence .

This is the product resulting from collecting, evaluating, analyzing, and interpreting foreign scientific and technical information. It covers foreign developments in basic and applied research and in applied engineering techniques; and scientific and technical characteristics, capabilities, and limitations of all foreign military systems, weapons, weapon systems, and materiel, the research and development related thereto, and the production methods employed for their manufacture.

A3.6.1. Advantages:
• The most accurate intelligence available on capabilities and characteristics of foreign weapon systems

• May be used to determine systems capabilities


• Engineers, scientists, and technical experts intimately familiar with the subject being investigated

A3.6.2. Limitations:

• May be extremely limited or inaccurate on new systems or systems to which there has been no hands-on access

• Prolonged analysis may be required

• Capabilities do not necessarily indicate intentions

A3.7. Open Source Literature .

Newspapers, magazines, books, and foreign broadcasts make up the greatest volume of intelligence materials. Telephone directories, films, maps, and charts are also useful.

A3.7.1. Advantages:
• Often presents an "insider's" view.

• Frequently provides a source of pictures and information not obtained from any other source

• Gives insight into another's thought processes and intentions

• May be the most timely information available

• Timeliness

A3.7.2. Limitations:

• Materials (particularly military and scientific journals) often represent an idealized rather than a real picture of a capability that is aspired to rather than possessed. However, such materials can provide a window into the future, if this caution is kept in mind.

• Censorship or other motivations limit promulgation of military related information

• Deception is possible

• Translations may be needed, which often causes a delay in using the information

• Significant information may be overlooked in the high volume of material to be processed

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