Larry James: Future AF ISR To Be Network-Centric


Air Force service members collect and analyze more than 1.3 million megabytes of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance data daily, an official said at the Air Force Association’s monthly meeting on April 26.

Lt. Gen. Larry James, deputy chief of staff for ISR at Air Force headquarters, told event attendees the Air Force has more than 20,000 airmen working on ISR missions daily, according to an Air Force release.

James said more than 1,000 of the airmen are deployed across all combatant command areas, working on join-service missions and the Air Force flies about 1,500 hours of airborne ISR missions daily. 

More than 1,000 of those hours are full-motion video, which the airmen will take and produce more than 1,400 pieces of intelligence each day. 

After collecting and reporting ISR intelligence, the Air Force fuses intelligence information and distributes it to partners through the Distributed Common Ground System network, James said. 

James said the branch’s intelligence processing capability meets high standards but noted the Air Force is looking into what the future of ISR will be. 

According to James, ISR will be network-centric and service members will be able to access intelligence via the network or a cloud environment. 

The Air Force needs a common architecture to enable that scenario, James said. 

Some platforms are not conducive to operating on non-permissive environments and will need to be adapted to meet the future need for ISR requirements, he added.

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