DoD Seal

Table of Contents

National Performance Review

Report on
Reinventing the Department of Defense
September 1996

  • Exploitation Process Reengineering Study (ExPReS). The Central Imagery Office (CIO) received a 1995 Hammer Award for the National Reinvention Lab, ExPReS. CIO led an effort to improve the imagery exploitation process so that it meets the new threat environment, the downsizing of government, and the new technical capabilities. ExPReS provides a blueprint for implementing an improved imagery exploitation process that will satisfy customer needs for the United States Imagery System (USIS) by 2003. It defines the common baseline for the USIS exploitation process, identifies strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and impediments, establishes a common vision, goals and objectives for the imagery community, and designs an "optimized" future exploitation process. In addition to process reengineering, ExPReS will provide decision support information on enabling technologies and migration systems associated with exploitation.

    • Virtual Laboratory. The CIO has orchestrated a Virtual Laboratory (VL) for collaborative Research and Development (R&D) under common goals. This VL has been a success story in cutting red tape and empowering employees involved in R&D across organizational boundaries. The VL, similar to Internet, is focused around CIO's R&D Strategic Thrust Objectives, and fosters common imagery R&D, and produces a synergy derived from a collaborative effort. The VL has an encrypted state-of-the-art Wide Area Network infrastructure which uses the Asynchronous Transfer Mode protocol. The VL infrastructure allows laboratory experts to access assets (tools and expertise) in a joint effort to improve user's operational capabilities. The main vehicle into the VL is a commercial-off-the shelf (COTS) collaborative software package that allows researchers to have a four- or five-way video teleconference while manipulating imagery simultaneously on a whiteboard viewable at all sites. Other tools available at laboratories include COTS, government-off-the-shelf, and developed software applications such as imagery exploitation, video exploitation, derived product development, digital mapping, and data base manipulations. Government employees and contractors working for the Military Services, Defense Department, Energy Department, Department of the Interior, and Intelligence Community are participating in the VL. Stovepipes, redundant efforts, and secularism have changed into cost sharing and technology leveraging through the VL.

    • Seal of Approval. The CIO's Seal of Approval Process and its correlated award recognizes excellence in quality achievements in the hundreds of imagery programs that fall within the domain of the USIS. Based on the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the Seal of Approval assesses the effectiveness and efficiency of imagery systems, their compatibility and future utility within the USIS. The criteria for being awarded the Seal of Approval focus on compliance with USIS, customer satisfaction, process improvements, and principles of good government. Since its inception in 1994, the Seal of Approval Processes facilitated organizational partnerships, created a better understanding of imagery community interactions, and accelerated technology sharing and imagery/product service improvement. Thus far, the CIO has awarded the Seal of Approval to the National Photographic Interpretation Center's Softcopy Program, the Defense Mapping Agency's Digital Production System, the National Reconnaissance Office's Enhanced Imagery System, and the Defense Airborne Reconnaissance Office's Common Imagery Ground/Surface System.

    • CIO Help Desk. The CIO established a 24-hour Help Desk to provide "one-stop shopping" for imagery questions and requests, especially for those customers residing outside the Washington, D.C. area. CIO wanted to eliminate the confusion and frustration that might be felt by customers who needed to contact CIO personnel but were unsure of where to start. The Help Desk is integrating more technical customer support and eventually will evolve into a USIS Support Center providing assistance to all imagery-related matters. The CIO Help Desk can offer assistance on any of the following categories: imagery plans, policy, programs, standards, architecture, R&D, and operations. The 24-hour, 7 days a week toll free number is 1-800-CIO-8432.

    • Pilot Accelerated Architecture Acquisition. The PA3I represents the initial and highly successful CIO effort to begin migration to the United States Imagery System (USIS). An integral CIO undertaking, the USIS sets forth the objective imagery architecture. As the inaugural A3I and CIO step toward USIS, PA3I focused on the infrastructure of the current imagery system as well as imagery to the warfighter. Collectively, the PA3I effort recorded numerous successes in terms of technical advancement, streamlined processes, and improving support to the imagery community.

    First field during the pilot effort, the Image Product Archive (IPA), standardized library function based on commercially available hardware and software, significantly improved the ability of warfighters to directly access and receive high quality imagery. At a number of key locations in the U.S., IPA now successfully links clients in the Intelligence Community with producers of imagery who can direct the activities of imagery collection platforms across service boundaries. Consequently, deployed military users have ready access to an electronic inventory of imagery and imagery-derived products using commercial-off-the-shelf computer systems. Further benefits are expected with the introduction of IPA into the European and Pacific theaters of operations during 1996.

    The IPA Client was installed on the USS George Washington (CVN 73) during the pilot effort. This marked the first time forces afloat have been able to fully participate in the USIS, and demonstrated IPA's ability to provide imagery to and from forces at sea. It is also the first installation of IPA on a service-unique intelligence workstation, further streamlining the activities of DoD imagery analysts. These military analysts now have increased, readily-available sources of imagery through PA3I. IPA has also been installed on an Army intelligence workstation testbed, and will be installed on the Air Force intelligence workstation during 1996. IPA will also become resident on the Global Command and Control System.

    The PA3I also achieved considerable success in adapting, enhancing and incorporating communications and intelligence systems toward pilot objectives. Notably, the PA3I delivered improvements for both the imagery analyst and imagery consumer via increased communications capability at numerous sites. Pilot also witnessed establishment of IPA to INTELINK access for both SCI and SECRET COLLATERAL users. As a result, INTELINK users are able to access IPA/INTELINK central servers for IPA holdings--once again aiding the customer base through increased access via streamlined processes. IPA was also integrated onto the Joint Deployable Intelligence Support System (JDISS), the widely-distributed workstation standard, thereby allowing global JDISS users access to imagery and imagery products on IPA servers.

    The success of PA3I resonates into the future, as other imagery archives will migrate to the IPA. IPA has also been selected as the imagery file server for the defense-wide airborne reconnaissance development program. The PA3I constitutes a major success story for the Department of Defense.