FY08 STUDY TORS

Approved for Public Release


USAF Scientific Advisory Board
Approved FY 2008 Summer Study

Defending and Operating in a Contested Cyber Domain

Terms of Reference
 
Background
The Air Force Scientific Advisory Board's FY07 Implications of Cyber Warfare study, which focused on networks, has made it clear that the Air Force will be operating in a contested cyber environment. The infrastructure on which the Air Force depends is controlled by both military and commercial entities and is vulnerable to attacks and manipulation. Operations in the cyber domain have the ability to impact operations in other war-fighting domains. It is essential that the Air Force preserve the ability to operate when the reception, processing, and distribution of vital information is challenged.

The Air Force must have the ability to: 1) recognize when under attack, 2) establish a layered defense against such attacks and 3) perform forensics on the attack. Technology solutions that would enable the development of appropriate analysis, detection, and response methods are critical to national security.

Charter
The study will:
  • Assess and characterize cyber protection systems used by the U.S. defense industrial base and their potential impacts to Air Force operations.
  • Assess and characterize current Air Force operational readiness levels for rapid detection, assessment and response, including the ability to "fight through" a cyber attack and to quickly re-organize networks.
  • Identify high leverage technology options for generating and maintaining operational readiness, including training, in a variety of scenarios. Explore the impacts of a layered defense and examine potential new constructs for creating and implementing new network and system architectures, for example, a "demilitarized zone (DMZ)" between the Department of Defense and external customers.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of such technology options and recommend near-term and mid-term options for implementation.
Study Products
Briefing to SAF/OS & AF/CC in July 2008. Publish report in August 2008.

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USAF Scientific Advisory Board
Approved FY 2008 Summer Study

Kinetic Precision Effects
Terms of Reference

Background
The evolution of Air Force weapons toward smaller and smaller precision warheads holds the promise of providing the warfighter with improved accuracy, precision effects delivery, and reduction of collateral damage. The potential benefits can be considerable, especially in an urban or other constrained environment.

The development and fielding of advanced highly precise kinetic weapons have numerous technological challenges and potentially overlap the effects from directed energy weapons. Development of highly energetic materials for increased effectiveness, integration of the guidance, navigation, sensor, and fusing systems and performing effects assessment all require insertion of state-of-the-art technology solutions using a systems-level perspective.
Charter
The study will:
  • Explore technological barriers to and potential solutions for the development of precision kinetic munitions.
  • Explore means to achieve precision effects given the range of target location errors (TLE) and circular error probable (CEP) for various systems, with associated CONOPs in deploying the munitions.
  • Provide an overview of technology challenges in the guidance, navigation, explosive capability, sensing, fusing, integration, and effects assessment for precision kinetic weapons. This overview should include current capabilities, performance, manufacturing, safety/handling characteristics, and potential overlaps with directed energy effects.
  • Provide an examination of the evolving geospatial systems which can potentially contribute to improved TLE, for example, systems operated by the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA) and traditional and non-traditional ISR collectors.
  • Provide an assessment of the current technology and technology trends in advanced guidance, energetic materials, sensing, fusing, effects assessment, and systems approaches for the development of such weapon systems. The study will determine metrics that should be used to assess the effectiveness of the desired effects.
  • Define technology options for improving precision kinetic effects in the near-, mid-, and far-term.
Study Products
Briefing to SAF/OS & AF/CC in July 2008. Publish report in August 2008.

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USAF Scientific Advisory Board
Approved FY 2008 Summer Study

Implications of Spectrum Management for the Air Force
Terms of Reference

Background
During the past decade the Air Force and DoD have lost access to a significant range of frequencies within the electromagnetic spectrum to other users. While national security needs sometimes give the DoD leverage in spectrum negotiations, we will face increasing pressure from commercial and other entities to relinquish or share spectrum. At the same time, the DoD must execute responsible stewardship of its currently available frequency spectrum. Efficient and creative technology solutions must be applied to meet national security needs.

Air Force platforms have become extremely dependent on data links (e.g., Link 16), and as the DoD heads toward a "network centric" mode of operations, constraints on access to the electromagnetic spectrum are becoming more critical. Loss of spectrum, especially within a dense electronic environment, could potentially inhibit the Air Force's ability to deploy more capable, wider bandwidth systems. While newer systems may be designed to be frequency agile and to perform real-time frequency access, legacy systems will be affected by the unanticipated loss of frequency. Technical solutions are needed to be able to anticipate and mitigate such negative effects. This study will explore a range of scientific and technical/operational solutions.

Charter
The study will:
  • Determine current frequencies that major Air Force systems require in order to conduct its missions.
  • Identify potential problem areas and potential loss of future capability (e.g., wider bandwidth sensors, satellite communications) when spectrum is limited or shared.
  • Assess time and frequency allocation methods to more efficiently use the spectrum. Determine potential mitigation solutions for existing systems and define their effectiveness. Explore potential trades associated with power management, bandwidth, frequency, radiation modes, etc., in making optimum use of currently assigned and/or utilized spectra.
  • Recommend technology solutions that the Air Force should consider for more efficient use of the spectrum and for clearly and proactively identifying spectrum needs in the near-term and mid-term for all emerging technological capabilities, to include compression techniques for all wireless devices.
  • For frequency agile systems, address platform integration risks and performance degradation to accommodate wide band power amplifiers, cabling, and antennas.
  • Assess how dynamic spectrum access can be implemented within the current regulatory framework and recommend changes to the existing laws and policies.
  • Investigate alternatives to spectrum access to perform missions (e.g., laser, electro-optical, infrared, etc.)
Study Products
Briefing to SAF/OS & AF/CC in July 2008. Publish report in August 2008.

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USAF Scientific Advisory Board
Approved FY 2008 Summer Study

Airborne Tactical Laser Feasibility for Gunship Operations
Terms of Reference

Background
Airborne laser weapons have the potential to provide ultra-precision lethality, scalable speed of light effects, and an increased ability to engage multiple targets from a deep magazine. Among current weapons systems, the gunship mission could potentially benefit from the advent of laser weapons, which could provide both a new defensive and offensive capability. Integration of tactical lasers should be easier on larger aircraft, such as the C-17, C-130J, or C-27J, than smaller fighters and attack aircraft. The study will assess the effectiveness and feasibility of an airborne tactical laser in a range of hostile environments.

Charter
This study will:
  • Assess the current state of airborne laser technologies (chemical and electric) and identify integration issues including size, weight, power requirements, thermal management, aero optical effects, and impacts on aircraft performance. Consider, for example, the C-130J, C-17 and C-27J aircraft as potential platforms.
  • Examine gunship operations and tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) to identify the missions, pacing, scenarios, operational requirements/constraints, and logistics/sustainment issues. Identify challenges which might limit laser weapons employment. Identify where lasers may enhance current operations or create new employment opportunities.
  • Assess tactical laser effectiveness against the spectrum of offensive and defensive gunship targets and identify a range of potential effects that the tactical laser can provide. Assess potential vulnerabilities and possible countermeasures.
  • Identify the challenges and opportunities based on the above assessment. Recommend technology options consistent with laser weapon-aircraft integration realities. Identify potential technology solutions that could be implemented in the near-, mid-, and far-term.
Study Products
Briefing to SAF/OS & AF/CC in July 2008. Publish report in August 2008.

Approved for Public Release