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Proceedings Paper

Author(s): Paul A. Henkel
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Paper Abstract

Current and forecast reductions in the defense budget are being compounded by the fact that certain programs are protected from budget cuts, to some extent, because of their highly classified nature. This fact is particularly true in the airborne reconnaissance field. Survival of unprotected airborne reconnaissance programs, according to a congressional staffer, can be considerably enhanced if they fall under the umbrella of verification/open skies, drug war, or special operations/low intensity conflict (SOLIC) areas of support. An application to the SOUC mission is an F-16 reconnaissance POD attached to the U-27 Cessna Caravan. The Caravan reconnaissance system consists of an infrared line scanning imagery sensor, a steerable forward-looking infrared sensor, and an electro-optic push broom imagery sensor. Also included is an imagery recorder, video management system and imagery data link. The U27 cabin is modified to provide the sensor operator with real time display and control of all sensors with a repeater display for the pilot. The caravan is not limited to the reconnaissance mission. Quick reconfiguration can provide for an airborne command post version, strike version with 50 caliber three-barrel Gatling gun and missiles, hospital medical evacuation, or transport. The aircraft is self sufficient and can operate off of minimally prepared landing strips. It appears that initiatives such as this are a direction that can significantly expand the airborne reconnaissance market, and requires the development of innovative new sensors and support systems.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 November 1990
PDF: 1 pages
Proc. SPIE 1342, Airborne Reconnaissance XIV, (1 November 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.23144
Show Author Affiliations
Paul A. Henkel, General Dynamics Corp. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1342:
Airborne Reconnaissance XIV
Paul A. Henkel; Francis R. LaGesse; Wayne W. Schurter, Editor(s)

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