The Defense Dissemination System (DDS) Receive Element (RE), also known as the Modular Dissemination System or MDS, was the first modular, Commercial-Off-the-Shelf (COTS) based electronic imagery dissemination system. Developed by TRW for the US Air Force, it reduced both the physical footprint and support costs of its predecessor, the RL, by 75%. 11 units were built, deployed, and made operational in less than 18 months -- an unprecedented pace. The RE marked the first ever operational installation of National imagery receive capability aboard the US Navy's aircraft carriers. The RE's first operational test was to plan and provide Battle Damage Assessment (BDA) for Tomahawk Land Attack Cruise Missile (TLAM) missions in DESERT STRIKE aboard an aircraft carrier -- a resounding success.
The Modular Dissemination System (MDS), built by TRW, is a DOD imagery dissemination migration system. The DoD is in the process of establishing a simplified baseline of the best, common information systems across the business functions of the Department. These migration systems represent a stage of process improvement designed at achieving a common set of automated processes and practices in DoD.