The Imagery Data Exploitation System [IDEX] program provides softcopy exploitation capability to 12 NIMA and DoD intelligence centers. This system allows the DoD and NIMA to satisfy critical time sensitive intelligence requirements. The capability includes imagery ingest, cataloging, display, storage, and secondary dissemination of imagery products to over 1,000 customers. The IDEX system has the ability to store and retrieve numerous images at each site. The system has nearly completed the process of evolving the originally defined custom architecture into a more open commercially based architecture.
The IDEX program is supported by on-site O&M personnel, factory personnel providing limited development and O&M labor; and the Customer Systems Support Center (Newington, Virginia) which provides O&M, configuration management, hardware and software maintenance, and a complete laboratory facility that allows alpha testing, community demonstration support, and discrepancy report work-off.
An IDEX program goal is to migrate to a more open architecture. This migration requires the replacement of custom hardware with commercial equipment and the addition of external interfaces to the image archive to provide access to raw, reformatted, and partially processed image data. A second IDEX program goal is to standardize external interfaces. Lockheed Martin Corporation has been actively supporting the IAS and Common Imagery Interoperability Profile (CIIP) for Imagery Access. Based on the systems developed at the Sunnyvale, Valley Forge, and Gaithersburg facilities, a prototype server implementation test bed and clients are being developed to support interface standardization.
As the performance of commercial equipment has improved, the 1990 IDEX II architecture has evolved to the current architecture in which IDEX has migrated away from custom implementations. The wideband network was replaced with the High-Performance Parallel Interface, and hardware compression and expansion has been replaced by software. The IDEX archive has opened up to allow access to image files through an Output Data Server, access to pixel arrays through a Display Broker, and database query and ordering through site-to-site transfer. Current access is through a mixture of custom and standard interfaces. Support of the IAS Specification will mean that standardized interfaces are provided.
The prototype implementation proposed by the IDEX contractor includes the development of a prototype server implementation to Image Access Services Specification (IASS) version 1.1, the use of a CORBA-compliant Object Request Broker (ORB) to implement the Application Program Interface (API), provision of a testbed at the IDEX factory for interface evaluation in April 1997, participation in the interface evaluation, and support of the update of IASS version 1.0 to version 2.0. The goal of the prototype facilities is to use existing technology. However, potential reuse of the prototype software by other programs is constrained by the fact that the back end of the API is specific to IDEX and therefore would not be readily useful to other systems.
The NIMA Libraries migration strategy builds on the robust existing IDEX II commercial mass storage elements and IMACTS Technology. The IDEX II Pilot A3I modifications provided the framework for increased data access and retrieval. IDEX II Evolution is to improve management software, integrate library into DISN, support tactical image and image product ingest, implement file server for image retrieval, consolidate site functionality to reduce operations and maintenance, and to phase out custom IDEX II exploitation workstation as sites to procure softcopy-capable commercial workstations.