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ACC intel officer shares new ISR perspective

Maj. Gen. VeraLinn Jamieson, the Air Combat Command senior intelligence officer, discusses a new intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance perspective called “fusion warfare” during an Air Force Association assembly in Washington, D.C., Oct. 22, 2015. Fusion warfare is defined as “an asymmetric decision advantage, integrating and synchronizing multi-source, multi-domain information in a specific time and space” and will ultimately benefit tactical, operational and strategic leaders. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Alyssa C. Gibson)

Maj. Gen. VeraLinn Jamieson, the Air Combat Command senior intelligence officer, discusses a new intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance perspective called “fusion warfare” during an Air Force Association assembly in Washington, D.C., Oct. 22, 2015. Fusion warfare is defined as “an asymmetric decision advantage, integrating and synchronizing multi-source, multi-domain information in a specific time and space” and will ultimately benefit tactical, operational and strategic leaders. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Alyssa C. Gibson)

WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Air Combat Command’s senior intelligence officer shared her perspective on fusion warfare with the intelligence community, defense industry and media during an Oct. 22 assembly at the Air Force Association’s Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies.

Maj. Gen. VeraLinn Jamieson explained fusion warfare as “an asymmetric decision advantage, integrating and synchronizing multi-source, multi-domain information in a specific time and space,” ultimately benefiting tactical, operational and strategic leaders.

“The reason we need fusion warfare is to maintain our tactical edge, meaning the outer boundary of warfighting, not just today but specifically in 2035,” Jamieson continued. “By then, our competitors will probably be near-peer technologically, and some will have advanced us.”

Fusion warfare is achieved by combining the observe, orient, decide and act loop across multiple domains. Currently, the Air Force has multiple platforms working to achieve their own objectives -- they’re not necessarily integrated to affect the target or influence strategic decision makers.

“Our current tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) are based off of lessons learned,” Jamieson said. “Fifth-generation technology is going to increase the amount of data available -- it’s going to be and produce a hub of data that’s going to flood us, known as big data. Fusion warfare provides an opportunity for a much faster pace via air, space and cyber multi-domain operations. Current TTPs won’t keep pace by 2035; they’re based on single inputs, not multi-source or multi-domain. This is why we must act now.”

This new idea is an answer to the secretary of the Air Force and chief of staff of the Air Force’s challenge for Airmen to quickly adapt and respond to evolving operations, and is one approach to achieving the Air Force Future Operating Concept for 2030.

The intelligence officer said it’s about integrating and synchronizing multi-source, multi-domain information to know the adversary’s processes better than they know it themselves to make the unpredictable become predictable. She also highlighted that the U.S. military and its allies, the defense industry and academia must be included in fusion warfare conversations to create the TTPs of the future.

“The innovative Airmen teaming with academia and industry in a collaborative, environment, integrating, focusing and fusing data, will result in fusion warfare,” Jamieson said. “At the end of the day, it takes Airmen to deliver that asymmetric decision advantage in advance of real time in a time and place of our choosing. We’re not going to wait until 2035.”

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