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A Soldier’s GPS. Battlefield Benefits and Applications of the Global Positioning System. Past, Present, and Future. Michael Short. Iraq, 1991. PAST. Stormin’ Norman’s Left Hook. GPS’ Role. “Hail Mary” play 200,000 troops, with 60 days’ worth of equipment 100 hours

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A soldier s gps

A Soldier’s GPS

Battlefield Benefits and Applications of the Global Positioning System

Past, Present, and Future

Michael Short




Gps role
GPS’ Role

  • “Hail Mary” play

  • 200,000 troops, with 60 days’ worth of equipment

  • 100 hours

  • Fastest and largest advance in the history of warfare

  • Even Rommel would be impressed


Present
PRESENT

  • Perfect comparison: Afghan & Iraq 2

  • Focus on tactical uses

  • Increased dependence = vulnerability?

  • Widespread availability problems


State of the art
State of the Art

  • Bulky, 20-lb boxes in 1991

  • Today, PLGR (plugger) is portable, durable

    • Precision Lightweight GPS Receiver

  • 1 per company (180 soldiers) in Desert Storm

  • Now, 1 per squadron (9 soldiers)

Can FRS 142 outmaneuver the Army?


Gulf wars gps advancement

DESERT STORM

Reports via radio, plots on paper map

9% precision guided

Time lapse pinpointing targets

Strategic navigation

IRAQI FREEDOM

GPS radio automatic, digital screen maps

70% precision guided

Target coordinates acquired via GPS

Tactical Navigation

Gulf Wars – GPS Advancement


Tactical uses
Tactical Uses

  • Navigation

  • Target Designation

  • Artillery/mortar guidance

  • Battlefield coordination


Achilles heel
Achilles’ Heel?

  • Dependence on technology

  • What if it can be taken away?

    • Jamming

    • Spoofing

    • Hacking

  • Double edged sword

    • Public availability


Jammers in iraq
Jammers in Iraq

  • “If a country has a Radio Shack, it will have a jammer.”

  • Russian jammers

    • Can block signal acquisition from 124 miles away, clear LOS

    • But not once the signal has been acquired

  • The bomb still falls.


Counterjamming
Counterjamming

  • Jammer emits a signal = death

  • “nulling” antenna arrays

  • G-STAR redirects the missile’s receiver

  • Ground troops more crude


The double edged sword
The Double Edged Sword

  • Whose GPS is it, anyway?

  • A competent opponent could use it against us

  • Indeed, could FRS 142 defeat an army?

    • Turn off selective availability

  • But still fairly accurate

    • Not enough for a cruise missile, but so what?

  • Some encoding is possible


Galileo lives
Galileo Lives

  • Europe’s bitter

    • Want their own 30-satellite constellation

  • Problems

    • Greater availability to the enemy

    • Access not restricted at all

  • Top notch accuracy


Benefits and dangers
Benefits and Dangers

  • Top benefit: 95% urban availability

    • Currently more like 55%

  • Top danger: availability to enemy forces

    • Even Europe could become the enemy

    • China might get involved…

  • Current solution:

    • Gripe about it and beg Europe not to do it

  • My Solution:

    • Satellites with missiles to shoot down the enemy GPS satellites.


Future
FUTURE

  • Complete battlefield digitization

    • Force XXI Battle Command, Battle and Below (FBCB2)

  • Soldier as a complete unit

    • Land Warrior


Fbcb2
FBCB2

  • Touch screen battle control

  • Total battlefield awareness

  • Elimination of friendly fire


Digitized divisions
Digitized Divisions

  • 2001 Exercises at Fort Irwin

    • Red Team falls to digital Blue Team

  • IV Infantry Division

    • Almost saw fighting in Iraqi Freedom


Land warrior
Land Warrior

  • Completely integrated soldiers

  • Urban combat advantages

  • Most deadly soldiers in history

  • Fewer troops needed, fewer troops lost



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