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Esri UK led industry team demonstrates joined up geospatial and intel capability to counter IED threat

Category: Future Technologies

A team of leading defence industry companies, led by geospatial capabilities specialist, Esri UK, has developed an interoperability exercise demonstrating how a joined up approach to exploiting multiple intelligence sources can be used to better inform decision making, and help protect British troops against the threat of IEDs (Improvised Explosive Devices).

The interoperability exercise was unveiled today, 25 January 2011, at the Defence Geospatial Intelligence 2011 Conference in London. The team comprises Esri UK, BAE GXP, ITT Envi, i2, Cobham MMI, Systematic and IHS Jane’s. Satellite imagery for the exercise was supplied by DigitalGlobe.

The use of IEDs accounts for the highest percentage of coalition and civilian casualties in current operations in Afghanistan. In response the volume of data being captured has increased from a growing range of diverse sources, including human intelligence from patrols and other sources, imagery intelligence from satellite and aerial reconnaissance and signals and sensor intelligence. Much of this information is captured using different platforms and systems, often in different formats.

”The challenge is to bring this mass of data together so that it can be effectively exploited to support the full spectrum of operations and to save lives”, said Nick Rigby, Non Executive Director, Esri UK. “The good news is that whatever the source, all this information has a place and time, so can be geographically referenced”.

The exercise shows how a Geographic Information Systems (GIS), such as Esri’s ArcGIS system, allows these multiple intelligence feeds to be brought together, analysed by different parties, and the results overlaid onto maps and imagery that can be shared at many levels. This is used to assist decision making at each stage, from Orientation, to Analysis, Planning and Action to Post Operational Review. Areas supported include intelligence gathering, threat assessment, mission planning and rehearsal, patrol route planning, operational tasking and post action network disruption assessment.

“As part of Esri UK’s long term commitment to its UK MoD customer, we took the initiative to bring together best of breed providers to address this challenge and demonstrate how more can be achieved with available technology” said Nick Rigby.

Esri UK

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