DOD Eagle Vision experiment wraps up at Lajes

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Marcus McDonald
  • 65th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
A Department of Defense experiment testing the versatility of one of the Air Force's ground communications station systems wrapped up here Sept. 29.

Eagle Vision-1, based at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, is designed to receive a variety of information from civilian remote-sensing satellites.

"This experiment has proved our capabilities for persistently tracking ships in the Atlantic -- both from here to the United States as well as from the United States to European ports," said Michael Mignone, chief of the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency's Assessments Division.

With a four-meter-wide tracking antenna and an accompanying seven-meter shelter that houses the electronics for processing the satellite signals, the Eagle Vision system allows operators to record images of the Earth on CD and DVD for later viewing.

The radar instruments gather information about objects on the sea surface by measuring the energy reflected from them, said Capt. Benjamin Powell, Eagle Vision-1 commander.

"Vessels larger than 25 meters in length can be detected on the resulting images and plotted on maritime charts," Mr. Mignone said. "Compiling histories of multiple images can reveal a lot about ocean-going traffic patterns and help to design and develop new safer and more efficient shipping routes."

Captain Powell and his team of Airmen from the 24th Intelligence Squadron at Ramstein AB joined Mr. Mignone and a team of scientists from the University of Miami in conducting the two-week experiment.

"With our capability of monitoring a 2,500-kilometer radius and visibility circle in the Atlantic, we're more than ready to support this key surveillance initiative," Captain Powell said.