Self-Protective Measures to Enhance Airlift Operations in Hostile Environments: Electronic Warfare, Radar, Airborne Interceptors, Infrared Tracking, Lasers, Directed-Energy
The national strategy of defending US interests as far from North America as possible has elevated airlift's importance in national security to a critical level. Air Force support of this strategy has led to the acquisition of new airlift aircraft and an emerging doctrine of global forward delivery that exposes airlifters to a wide range of threats across the conflict spectrum. Such a doctrine and our plans for global projection may not be supportable unless airlift aircraft are equipped with self-protective systems. A lack of airlift survivability is a potential Achilles' heel in the US global defense posture. This is an ominous and compelling reason for studying how to protect airlift aircraft in hostile environments.
Self-Protective Measures to Enhance Airlift Operations in Hostile Environments is a worthy response to this national crisis for its timeliness, comprehensive approach, and authority. The report is timely not only in addressing an issue of national strategic significance but also in doing so at a time when the Military Airlift Command is beginning its search for solutions. The report is comprehensive in its examination of strategy, doctrine, forces, threat, and technological solutions while also considering cost and fiscal issues. The report is authoritative in its blending of military art with industrial science, and only a person with the author's experience and insight could have produced it.
The author's unique perspective on this topic comes from having spent 19 years as a pilot in transports, as an aeronautical engineer developing and acquiring combat aircraft, as a staff officer at the Military Airlift Command dealing with daily operational issues, and as a research fellow studying the subject at great length. He has done a masterful job of explaining complex problems and potential solutions in easily understood terms. The study will undoubtedly stand as a landmark effort in the evolution of combat airlift. Everyone who has a role in future airlift issues or US military strategy will want to read it.
CONTENTS * FOREWORD * INTRODUCTION * Notes * Part I * OPERATIONAL NEED * Chapter 1 * AIRLIFT DOCTRINE AND FORCES * Current Airlift Doctrine * Formal Doctrine * Joint Doctrine * Informal Doctrine * Force Structure * Strategic Airlift * Tactical Airlift * Airlift Operations * Other Operations * Conclusions * Notes * Chapter 2 * THE THREAT * Mission Scenarios * Deployment * Employment and Sustainment * Threat Intensity * Near Main Operating Bases * En Route between Theaters * En Route within Theater * Near Forward Operating Locations Peacetime-versus-Wartime Threats * Threat Trends * History * Future * Conclusions * Notes * Part II * TECHNICAL FEASIBILITY * Chapter 3 * ELECTRONIC WARFARE: HOW IT FUNCTIONS * Electromagnetic Spectrum * Radar * Waveform Types * Other Design Considerations * Radar Usage * Electronic Warfare Practice * Offensive and Defensive Tasks * Electronic Warfare Tasks * Electro-optical Countermeasures * Infrared Homing Missiles * Antivision Lasers * Laser Beam-Riding Missiles * Directed-Energy Weapons * System Countermeasures * Time * Countering Humans * Missile Guidance Countermeasures * Conclusions * Notes * Chapter 4 * TECHNOLOGICAL SOLUTIONS * Design Philosophy * Benefits of Low Altitude * Countering Radar Systems
- Progressive Management, July 2012
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