M. Battlespace Environments
The Battlespace Environments technology area encompasses the study, characterization, prediction, modeling, and simulation of the terrestrial, ocean, lower atmosphere, and space/upper atmosphere environments to understand their impact on personnel, platforms, sensors, and systems; to enable the development of tactics and doctrine to exploit that understanding; and to optimize the design of new systems.
Technology subareas for Battlespace Environments in the ASTMP are organized around a particular taxonomy that is specified in the Technology Area Plan prepared for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Deputy Director for Research and Engineering. Two two technology subareas that apply to the ASTMP are the Terrestrial Environment and Lower Atmosphere Environment.
Commanders at all levels must know how the environment will impact their operations as well as the operations of their adversary and use this knowledge for military advantage. Sensor and weapon system developers must also understand the environments effects on system performance to optimize design effectiveness. This investment will provide the following improvements to future warfighting capabilities:
- An order of magnitude improvement in providing digital topographic data needed by the commander for optimized deployment, mobility, planning, and logistics support.
- High resolution weather forecasts for incisive decision making and enhanced operational capability in adverse weather; reduced weather-related damage, and fuel costs.
- Realistic representation of dynamic environment and terrain in simulations to permit more effective mission planning, rehearsal, and training.
- Realistic portrayal of the effects of the Battlespace Environments to reduce operational costs and reduce casualties.
3. Technology Subareas
a. Terrestrial Environment
Goals and Time Frames
The Terrestrial Environments subarea focuses on technology developments in the areas of cold regions research and topography. This work encompasses the study, characterization, and modeling of the physical phenomena, processes, interactions, and effects associated with terrain, its surface features, and the overlying atmosphere at scales of interest to ground combat forces.
Cold Regions engineering research focuses on the effects of snow and frozen ground on both materiel and winter operations. Topographic research focuses on better understanding the terrain through improved data generation, analysis, and modeling through the exploitation of multisensor data. Objectives in Terrestrial Environments technology development include the following:
- Millimeter wavelength (MMW) signature model to support system performance simulations in snow covered terrain (FY97).
- A dynamic terrain visualization capability to help create a virtual 3D tactical environment to support training and mission planning during the Armys Task Force XXI exercise (capability is to be demonstrated and transitioned to Army simulation centers) (FY97).
- Model-generated passive/active infrared (IR) and background scenes of winter terrain for predicting sensor performance and design (FY02).
- Automated generation/update of topographic data for mission rehearsal and terrain visualization (FY02).
- Knowledge-based performance estimated for dual and multimode sensing systems operating in IR, MMW, and RF energy regimes over winter impacted terrain (FY07).
- Battlespace fly/walk through and automated terrain analysis capability (FY07).
- Dynamic Environment and Terrain (DET) implementation for use with computer-generated forces (FY07).
The winter environment presents a severe challenge to not only the performance of materiel but also its operability. Snow and frozen ground dramatically alter the propagation of acoustic and seismic energy. The infrared and millimeter wavelength signature of terrain features change markedly with freezing and thawing. Icing may dramatically change aircraft performance and impact communications capability. The ability to quantify and model these processes and their effects are essential to system design, test and evaluation, mission planning, and war gaming. The Cold Regions technology effort objectives are to
- Develop first principle models to predict the multispectral signatures of winter terrain surfaces and features for imaging sensor systems. The models will be structured to provide simulation capabilities for evaluating environmental constraints early in the development cycle of sensor systems.
- Determine procedures and equipment criteria enabling combat engineering operations to function effectively in winter conditions. This includes use of snow and frozen ground for expedient fortifications, facilities, roadways, and excavations; and operation of engineer equipment under winter conditions.
- Develop models of equipment and unit performance in winter conditions in sufficient detail to enable realistic simulation of these effects in interactive synthetic environments.
Major Technical Challenges
- Acoustic energy propagation is distinctly different in winter than in summer. The technical challenge is understanding the coupling that occurs between the complex air, snow, frozen-ground, and unfrozen-soil interfaces.
- IR, MMW, and radar interactions with winter terrain surfaces (i.e., snow, ice, and frozen soil).
- The impacts of low temperatures, snow, ice, frozen ground, and ice accumulation on the performance of materiel and equipment must be characterized to allow design of modifications, formulation of special techniques to overcome or minimize the constraints, and projection of the extent and duration of the impacts.
(1) Transition signal inversion techniques for seismic-acoustic sensor self-calibration in a dynamic winter environment to Wide Area Mine (WAM) developers (FY97).
(2) Provide baseline data on the low temperature performance of composite materials to U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research Development and Engineering Center (FY97).
(3) Provide techniques, kits, and support systems to reduce low temperature degradation of engineer materiel performance to U.S. Army Engineer Center and School (FY98).
(4) Provide critical data for integrated winter operation tactical decision aids (TDAS) (FY99).
(5) Integrate seismic-acoustic sensor performance in a synthetic environment to optimize sensor performance (FY00).
(6) Transition model of the spatial variability of atmospheric icing to support communications and aerial operations TDAs to the U.S. Army Aviation Center and School and the U.S. Army Intelligence Center and School (FY00).
(7) Integrate physics-based multi-band dynamic environment models for prediction of sensor performance and optimizing sensor design (FY01).
Providing improved knowledge of the terrestrial environments through topography encompasses varied requirements. Efforts are needed to provide technology for rapid digital terrain data generation, terrain visualization, data/software standardization, terrain analysis, data management, and realistic mission rehearsal and training. The warfighter needs these types of capabilities to achieve superior knowledge of the battlefield through a common picture of the battlespace, to win the information war and thereby dominate maneuver.
Topographic science is the delineation and representation of positions and elevations of natural and man-made features. Science and technology efforts as shown in Figure IV-M-1 concentrate on remote sensing, spectral characterization/analysis, mapping, point positioning, land navigation, surveying, terrain/environmental analysis, and their effects on tactical operations, battlefield visualization, and modeling and simulation.
Figure IV-M-1. Topography Science and Technology
Objectives in topographic and geospatial information development include:
- Demonstration of advanced technologies for digital topographic data generation, update, and management, and for the implementation of dynamic terrain into mission planning and rehearsal capabilities and training systems.
- Use of knowledge-based techniques to improve terrain data exploitation for detecting and identifying features and changes and to predict terrain conditions to support cross-country movement, cover, concealment, site evaluation, and other combat decision models.
- Reduction of the time required to generate terrain and weather environments in distributed modeling and simulation to support training and mission planning and rehearsal.
Major Technical Challenges
- Identifying terrain features/targets automatically to respond within the enemys decision cycle.
- Developing a total force positioning and navigational capability for the Army. Accurate fire and the ability to locate and navigate will be key to success on the obscured future battlefield.
- Promulgating standard verified and validate software to achieve joint interoperability goals.
- Generating terrain and weather environments in near real time for tactical operations and distributed modeling and simulation.
(1) Transition correlated dynamic battlefield visualization capabilities (terrain and climate) for Distributed Interactive Simulation (DIS) to the Army (FY97).
(2) Demonstrate identification of natural and man-made materials using far infrared and laser induced fluorescence (FY97).
(3) Demonstrate the feasibility of passive fluorescence for identifying natural and man-made materials (FY98).
(4) Demonstrate multispectral imagery/hyperspectral imagery integration with digital terrain elevations for terrain feature extraction (FY98).
(5) Test initial field capability for automated feature attribution using multispectral imagery (FY98).
(6) Incorporate radar and hyperspectral imagery into DrawLand visualization software and transition software to Open GL architecture (FY98).
(7) Devise neural network image data classification system (FY98).
(8) Develop new methods for portraying terrain analysis product reliability (FY98).
(9) Transition techniques for filling terrain/climate data gaps through kriging/cokriging (FY98).
(10) Incorporate automated feature extraction techniques into the Digital Stereo Photogrammetric Workstation (FY99).
(11) Link 3D model and texture library to data base generation capability (FY99).
(12) Finalize development and testing of terrain/precipitation model (FY99).
(13) Investigate terrain data exploitation from high resolution spectral satellite systems (FY99).
(14) Complete Hypermedia Transfer Version of the Desert Field Guide (FY99).
(15) Complete study of micro electro-mechanical system (MEMS) for advanced positioning and navigation (FY00).
(16) Develop improved user interface to Defense Software Repository System (DSRS) Mapping, Charting, and Geodesy Domain (FY01).
(17) Refine terrain/climate models for modeling and simulation (FY01).
(18) Investigate capability for automated feature attribution based on terrain reasoning (FY01).
(19) Demonstrate visualization and command planning tools for urban data sets (FY01).
(20) Improve terrain data inferencing methodologies (FY02).
(21) Demonstrate a spectrally enhanced multisensor exploitation capability (FY02).
(22) Demonstrate linkages of image-based visualization systems with feature attribute data bases (FY03).
b. Lower Atmosphere Environment
The Armys role in the Lower Atmosphere Environment subarea encompasses three technology efforts: Current Battlespace Weather, Predicted Battlespace Weather, and Decision Aids. One particular Service will assume the lead in specific research and development areas, and the work will be adapted by other Services. The Armys efforts in these areas are in accordance with and keyed to objectives laid out in the TAP.
The goal of the Current Battlespace Weather thrust is to provide the ability to determine weather information for a battle-size area anywhere in the world. This is accomplished through direct or remote sensing of atmospheric parameters. The Predicted Battlespace Weather thrust concentrates on methods to predict atmospheric conditions over a battle-size area for any time from the present up to two weeks in the future. These predictions use analysis of any available data, as well as meteorological modeling. The goal of the Decision Aid thrust is to provide information to warfighters on the effects of the current and predicted atmospheric conditions. This involves assimilating and disseminating weather information and threshold values for all weather sensitive systems in order to produce tailored decision aids.
Successful accomplishment of these goals will provide the Army with the capability to Own the Weather, using knowledge of the lower atmosphere environment and its effects to gain an advantage on the battlefield.
Current Battlespace Weather
Accurate and timely weather and atmospheric information over critical parts of the battlespace will provide future higher resolution forecast models with the initialization data to increase their accuracy. Combining the new capabilities of remote sensing systems operating from ground, air, and space platforms with covert, small signature, in situ sensor platforms will result in new realtime data of the battlespace and target area meteorology environment. The changing role of U.S. forces into a reactive force deployed to global small-scale conflicts requires that this information be available on extremely short notice throughout the world. With the evolving capability of high resolution battlespace forecast models, as discussed below, this data will provide the critical initialization information and confirm the model predictions for commander confidence of planning decisions. Basic research focuses on the measurement of small-scale phenomena in the planetary boundary layer, including aerosols along with weather parameters. Objectives include the following:
- Extract battlespace weather and atmospheric information from satellite active remote sensors. Provide data from ground to space with four times the accuracy of current passive sensors, covering 40 percent of the global surface in under 4 hours.
- Automate data retrieval from tactical weapon platforms. Increase battlespace data collections by a factor of five over current sensors.
- Provide seamless data distribution between Services and tactical areas. Common, joint data collection and communication allows all Services to share data in realtime for a consistent, accurate battlespace "nowcast" picture.
- Develop ground-based remote sensors which operate "on the run" to support future force mobility. Provide data 87 percent faster than todays technology.
- Better understand the usefulness of sensor development and applications and the use of field data sets to understand complex physical processes such as surface layer interactions to support theater operations.
- Provide quantitative assessments of the linear and nonlinear characteristics of natural and man-made battlefield aerosols that impact on visible through millimeter wave propagation and aerosol detection.
- Develop advanced laboratory measurement techniques and instrumentation as tools for aerosol microphysics diagnostics and for the detection and identification of chemical/biological warfare agents.
- Develop aerosol and gaseous information sufficient to model quantitatively atmospheric limitations on military systems that rely on using radiation (UV, visible, IR, and millimeter wave) for detection, imaging, and identification.
- Develop and test ground-based and satellite remote sensors for battlefield atmospheric characterization of the dynamic and thermodynamic properties of aerosol and gases, such as temperature, density, wind fields, water vapor, and chemical/biological warfare agents.
Major Technical Challenges
- Develop remote sensor concepts and software that provide tactical data for battlefield meteorological models, precision strike weapons, and general real-time situational awareness on the battlefield.
Develop measurement systems that resolve the microscale dynamical structures for the verification of atmospheric models operating at these scales. Technical barriers for basic research involve the investigation and explanation of previously unobservable atmospheric phenomena occurring at these scales, such as the convective boundary layer, gravity waves, and shear instabilities.
Determine the characteristics of aerosols, their dynamic properties in the atmospheric medium, and their optical properties over all spectral bands of military interest and develop the instrumentation that permits the detection and analysis of aerosols.
(1) Demonstrate, at the Army Field Artillery School, Ft. Sill, Oklahoma, a downsized prototype atmospheric Profiler, trailer mounted, with an integrated Radio Acoustic Sounding System (RASS), capable of being towed by a HMMWV. Make measurements in one-eighth the time required by the Mobile Measurement Set (MMS), and reduce by 33 percent the number of vehicles and soldiers required (FY97).
(2) Complete development of neural net software for retrieving met satellite temperature soundings, and couple with an improved Profiler radiometer to eliminate the need for the RASS. Eliminate the requirement for the Profiler RASS, making it possible for a Profiler antenna to fit on top of a Single Integrated Command Post (SICP) shelter (FY98).
(3) Complete development of neural net software for direct retrieval of wind speed and direction from met satellite radiance data. Improve the accuracy of met satellite measured winds by 50 percent (FY99).
(4) Determine limits of laser-induced fluorescence for remote sensing and identification of chemical/biological aerosols under realistic battlefield conditions, and provide results to ERDEC (FY99).
Predicted Battlespace Weather
Relying on the Navy and Air Force large-scale, long-term prediction models allows the Army to concentrate on resolving the smallest battlespace scales, below one kilometer in space and one hour in time. As advances in the regional and theater scale models allows reliable forecasts beyond 10 days, the Army will reduce the space and time scales to 100 meters/1 minute and below to resolve the boundary layer processes that influence the propagation of acoustic and EO energy, and the motion and dilution of chemical and biological agents on the battlefield. Running as nested applications below the large-scale models, the battlespace model will provide the spatial and temporal data that fills in the scales provided by the larger models. Basic research focuses on transport and diffusion modeling and optical effects of the atmosphere on propagation through turbulence. Specific objectives include the following:
- Link battlescale forecast models with gas/aerosol transport and diffusion models to provide 4D predictions of chemical and biological agent threats on the future battlefield. Increase accuracy of spatial forecast by 50 percent and concentrations by 60 percent.
- Optimize environmental prediction models to allow operation on virtually all tactical weapon systems, from the future soldier to artillery and missile systems. Provide more accurate and timely data for platform-specific decision aids.
- Develop a stand-alone analysis system that will emphasize key weather elements and weather phenomena for important decision making factors, which can serve all Services for the purpose of improving nowcasting, forecast guidance products, and, potentially, the analysis in the mesoscale numerical weather prediction system.
- Build a mesoscale numerical weather prediction system appropriate for battlescale applications including the boundary layer. The system should be capable of assimilating a wide range of data over complex inland and coastal terrain and accounting for improved cloud and aerosol treatment in the model physics, and it should include physical process oriented forecast models.
- Develop descriptions of the dynamic flow interactions with highly complex terrain, vegetation, and structures that can run on a variety of computer systems, from battlefield workstations to supercomputers.
- Improve modeling of transport and diffusion (T&D) of gases, particulates, and pollutant plumes essential to the DoDs chemical and biological warfare R&D programs. Couple T&D models to mesoscale NW models to forecast aerosol dispersion and concentration.
- Understand and model the propagation of acoustic and short wavelength electromagnetic radiation in the atmosphere under natural and battle induced conditions.
- Develop electro-optical (EO) propagation and target background signature models.
Major Technical Challenges
- The computational speed and memory/storage required to resolve the mesoscale phenomena and to represent and predict mesoscale physical processes is extraordinary. Transport and Diffusion (T&D) of gases and particulates require treatments more sophisticated than traditional Gaussian plume models to represent the turbulent, chaotic nature of atmospheric motions. Technical barriers for basic research involve the development of probability density function (PDF) solutions in order to predict the concentration fluctuations, a critical issue for soldier system exposure, and the development of improved nonlinear solutions for the Navier Stokes equations that describe the physical process of T&D.
- The flow of the atmosphere around and through vegetative canopies and through urban "canopies" plays a critical role in the use of countermeasure aerosols and for chemical and biological defense. Models of such flow must be available for operation on tactical systems.
(1) Demonstrate in Task Force XXI a 24-hour Battlescale Forecast Model (BFM) using client/server connectivity to the Army Battle Command System (ABCS). Reduce forecast errors by 35 percent for winds, temperature, pressure, and humidity while running on Army Common Hardware computers (FY97).
(2) Deliver to the Integrated Meteorological System (IMETS) a non-hydrostatic moisture microphysics BFM for clouds and precipitation forecasts. Improve adverse weather forecasts by 40 percent while running on Army tactical computers (FY99).
Mission planning and weapon selection on a future highly mobile, extremely lethal battlefield will require the commander to have available the best possible information on the impact of the weather and atmosphere on the mission objective. Decision cycles will shorten, forces will be more dispersed and independent, and thus future decision aids must operate on the tactical platforms, using all the data the sensors and model provide and providing the output in the most effective assimilation format. Weather impact decision aids will allow the commander to employ the weather as a combat multiplier. Specific objectives include the following:
- Develop integrated weather/atmospheric data, broad spectrum propagation models and advanced visualization methods, to provide 3D visualized decision aids showing graphical depictions of atmospheric impacts on mission plans and weapon use for current and future battlefields.
- Automate mission planning tools based on detailed knowledge of environmental impacts, to optimize the commanders planning and decision-making ability. Improve the required mission output, as defined by the commander, by 30 percent over current methods.
- Integrate atmospheric and background models with target prediction models to ensure that atmospheric effects are included in the assessment of weapon system performance, survivability, and vulnerability.
- Develop propagation assessment systems with associated environmental decision aids, simulation and visualization capabilities, and sensitivity analyses.
- Develop environmental decision aids for operational and tactical levels of war planning and training which give the effects and impacts of weather and battle-induced atmospheres on U.S., allied, and threat unit functions, systems, subsystems, sensors, and personnel.
- Develop real-time weather and environmental effects models (obscurants, illumination levels, EO, and acoustic propagation) to provide common, unified weather effects, features, and representations leading to improved battlescale forecasting for simulation, training, doctrine, and C3 systems that are compatible for all Services.
Major Technical Challenges
- Battlespace prediction models and parameterization methods for boundary layer physical processes will crucially depend on in-theater data assimilation methods that fully exploit all sources of weather observations from remote and in situ platforms. Development of robust and flexible procedures, based as field programs, to adapt to the available data options in real time will be needed.
- As the observation data from various sensors and platforms increase and the fusion and prediction are highly synergized, quality control is essential to ensure the accurate description of the state of the atmosphere.
(1) Demonstrate integrated EO/acoustic/gas/biological agent propagation with tactical weather data and DIS visualization tools for mission planning at Division Task Force XXI. Improve multi-component mission planning by 40 percent over current binary decision aid technology; improve information assimilation by 60 percent over 2D map decision aid displays (FY98).
(2) Demonstrate decision aids that display 3D sound levels over terrain (FY98).
(3) Demonstrate satellite remote sensing of battlespace environments and tactical use of such information in operational decision aids to CECOM (FY01).
4. Roadmap of Technology Objectives
The roadmap of technology objectives for Battlespace Environments is shown in Table IV-M-1, below.
Table IV-M-1. Technical Objectives for Battlespace Environments
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Table IV-M-1. Technical Objectives for Battlespace Environments
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