DEVELOPMENTS IN AIR TARGETING: PROCESS AND FUTURE PROSPECTS

Created: 6/1/1959

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TITLB: Developments In Air Targeting: Progress And Future Prospects

AUTHOR: Kenneth T. Johnson

VOLUME: 3 ISSUE: Summer

STUDIES IN ;

INTELLIGENCE

A collodion ol articles on the historical, operational, doctrinal, and theoretical aspects ol intelligence.

All statements of fact, opinion or analysis expressed in Studies in Intelligence are those of

the authors They do not necessarily reflect official positions or views of the Central Intelligence Agency or any other US Government entiry. past or present. Nothing in the contents should be construed as asserting or implying US Government endorsement of an anicle's faciual statements and interpretations

rospective space-age system for handling air intelligence data, centeredassive electronic brain.

DEVELOPMENTS IN AIR TAJRGETTNG: PROGRESS AND FUTURE PROSPECTS Kenneth T. Johnson

Four preceding articles In this series described how the USAF Directorate ot Targets has been seeking to Increase Itsby developing mathematical models and otherfor the mass handling of data. This final article will look briefly at the progress of these techniques since thedescribing them were published and then examine some other analytical tools In process of development for the target intelligence specialist.

The three mathematical models previously describedMilitary Resources Model, the Air Battle Model andAssessment Model. The Military Resourcesthe capability of the Soviet Bloc militarywith Its supporting economy, to carry out militaryand analyzes the effects of planned attacks. TheModel1 war-games the interaction of battle forcesbasisost exacting layout of both sides. Itquestion.ime of tbe game, to what extentand defensive plans been carried through orBut it must first be supplied data describingare available to each side, what courses ofwill attempt, and all other conditions affecting the out-and the preparation of these dataemandinga stimulant for Intelligence. The Damagepredicts the probable physical, functional, or opera-effects of atomic weapons on targets or targetanswers questions of the type, "Did the building collapse?"

many casualties were caused?" The most recent article

SEOfcT

Targeting

of thisreated these models as illustrating one aspect of the manifold problem of data handling, described theTarget Intelligence File, and highlighted thefor better and faster ways of storing and retrieving

The Analytical Models in Operation

Many months have been spent in developing these models to bring the fantastic capacity and speeds of electronicto bear on the increasingly complex data which must be considered In making operational decisions. How are the computer techniques working out In practice? The Air Battle Model has been in constant use. making test runs lo evaluate different target systems, battle plans, and strategies. Lists of groundofthe Air Battle Model have been fed into the Damage Assessment Model for the calculation of damage and radiation effects. These results have then been used by target analysts to determine the residual capabilities of affected installations.

The Damage and Assessment Model has kept pace with the Air Battle Model's output of ground zeros and other dataeffects analysis. Improvements in the form in which the results of the damage and contamination runs arehave evolved from consultation between analysts and machine programmers. The latest of these improvements has been effected by feeding into the Model criteria forautomatically from damage and contamination values whether an Installation is still operational after attack.

Since publication of the article on the Military Resources Model In the beginningeries of operational runs has been made on Its economic grid to show tbe multiple direct and Indirect economic effects of Soviet civilian and military programs Completely effective use of the economic grid is still hampered, however, by data gaps in such Important areas as guided missiles and atomic energy; and aggregations in the Model which exclude consideration of certain specialised Items of equipment limit the results to statements of general economic capability.

' "Data Handllostudies, Vol HI. No.l. ,

Air forge'ing

Developmental work on the military logistics andgrids of the Military Resources Model, in progress In the springas provided the basis forew model covering USSR regional air defenseThis model assesses the capabilitypecifican air defense districtenetrationmount defensive sorties and missile firings after Its logistic and transportation faculties have been damaged by an air attack of any given scope and magnitude. The initial model has Just been constructed and an initial run made; further development Is in process. The construction of this new model shows how the mathematical modeling technique can be adapted to serve new purposes.

Models have thus already assumed some of the targeting load, but much remains to be done In deterrrurung whether and how models can be used In other analytical areas. What is intriguing for intelligence analysts, however, is that in some areas models have brought them to the thresholdrecise means for detenninlng what items of information areetermination which will provide new, sure guidance to collection and analysis activities.s It is called. Is done by reranriing the same problem several times with varying parameters to determine which variationsritical effect on the results.ood antidote to the tendency of analysts, having available the models' huge capacity for data, to becomeIn the pursuit of minutiae which have no substantial Importance for their problem.

Although the article on Data Handling TechniquesIn the most recent Issue of the Studies, some new gains can be counted here. too. Of the morefor machine processing of the CTTF already levied by analysts, aboutan be handled by existing programs and another seven are now being programmed,8 yet to be translated into machine, language.ridging of the gap between an analyst's statement of his needs and the marching orders for the machineigh degree of rapport between analyst and programmer, and this rapport is being developed. The programmer mustthe requirement step by step, and patiently recordtep In an un garbled instruction to the machine. Laborious" *

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as toil process la, It pays offetter product, and the analyst man-hours that arc made available lor more difficult jobs grow and grow.

The acquisition of an electronic data plotter has veryenhanced the utility of tbe CTIF system. The plotter accepts coordinatesachine tape or from cards and records the locations directlyinear projection map.are now Hearing completion which by convertingand longitude to linear coordinates will enable theto plot locationsap of any projection and any scale that will fit onlotting board. Single symbols can be plotted at the rate ofooints perThe usefulness of the machine is attested by the long queues of waiting analysts eager to short-cut the tedious task of massive data plotting.

In an earlier paper in this series1 Oeneral Samford was quoted as saying that the extent to which Intelligence should contribute to the process of war gaming might be disputable but that if an advanced war gaming process were kept closely in mind during all processes of Intelligence preparation, the intelligence necessarytrategy would be better. Theof this statement ts already being demonstrated as the need for detailed layouts of enemy capabilities reveals Inadequacies in our estimates. The operation of the Air Battle Model has properly been moved out of Intelligence to the Directorate of Plans, but because Intelligence personnel did the pioneering work on the Model, the Air Battle Analysis Division in Plans Is largely staffed with former intelligence analysts. Thisfacilitates not only the feedback of requirements on intelligence but aura the interpretation of the intelligence data to be fed into the Model and the understanding of Intelligence requirements tor data from its output.

At the Model Application Branch in the Directorate ofa cadre of target intelligence analysts has been assembled and is being oriented to improve .the input data for the Air Battle Model and the utilization of its output. The Branch must also keep under review the operations of the Damageand Military Resources Models, which are wholly and

Air Targeting

appropriately placed in the Directorate of Targets; newarise every day about how best to use the existing models In solving targeting problems. At the same time it is working on the development of new models to handle current problems and anticipating other problems which targeting is mine to face tomorrow.

The Data Problem

The Inescapable task of assembling intelligence data assumes an aggravated form when tbe data is to be used as inputathematical model. It is not that tbe use of modelsata demand: the data problem Is there anyway, models or no models. But what the models often do is make the analyst face up to kinds of data the likes of which he had neverfor example the number of metric tons of pumps and compressors required for each major military componentrewar build-up ofrolonged bout with tbe stem requirementodel for enemy data coefficients, enemy strike plans, or the capacities of enemy installations can bring an analyst to the point of despair. Yet he can take comfort from the ease with which problems can be rerun. The data do not have to be perfect the first time,erunew figure may show that the variation Is not of criticalA capable officer of ours is wont tootover Input data with "You dont like our figure? Oive me one olse It."

The Consolidated Target Intelligence File described in tbe last article isaluable device in this battle with tbe data andiant step in facilitating mechanised support of target analysis. Another giant step is anticipated in the near future with the application of the new Air Force Intelligence Data Handling System,. The system is scheduled to be operational early2 for tbe Washington area.

Tbe development ofas initiated hi responseeadquarters USAF requirement, formalised inor an integrated system to accept Information from any and all sources and to organise, store, manipulate, andit without the llmitatJona of capacity and speed inherent In present practices The aim is the best possible system to meet present and anticipated requirements,illy

Air Targeting

automatic system of machines andombination of manual and machine methods, or just human beings. The contractor Isroad selection of talent to work on the system, including horary scientists, experimentalcomputer programmers, and computer engineers.

Although the best approachesign for this system is still being worked out, it is already apparent that It will be basedarge-scale, high-speed, general-purpose computer to accomplish many tasks.omputer will makethe developmentich indexing system, not only by document but by key words on individual pages. Thissystem will enhance the ability of analysts to make subtle correlations of data and develop significant interrelationships which may exist in available information. Data storage and retrieval can be accomplished primarily through microfilm

Tbe computer in the system will make possible the fast and accurate communication and dissemination of newly collected data, notably that necessary for evaluating enemy intentions and giving warning of attack. Many types of information must be examined rapidly, for example that obtained byflown specifically to develop certain Intelligence data It will also analyze reports and documents to produce Order of Battle. Current Intelligence, Technical Intelligence, etc.,bits and pieces of raw Information and associating them for development into meaningful products. In target analysis it will be invaluable, for example in the evaluation of foreign target systems, the charting of foreign air facilities, and the development of strategic and tactical targets

The retrieval facet of the system may function in any of severaluestion may be given by an analyst to the operatorlexowriter or similar device in his working area. It would be put into proper form and automatically transmittedlexowriter in the computer area, which would print It out. Here it would be checked for format and validity and then fed to the computer system. The computer wouldamong types of questions The answer to oneevaluated Intelligence holdings would be obtainedile of evaluated Intelligence directly connected to thesystem. As tbe result of automatic search procedures the answer would be printed out or displayed, as appropriate.

Air Torgcfing

A demand for raw information, on the other hand, might be answered in any of three forms or some combination ofa listing of documents or pages pertinenttudy, theor pages themselves, or statistical Information derived from the documents. If the document itself were desired, the computer system would Identify the specific document number. This identification would be hand-deliveredeparate raw information storage device, which would produce eithercardsull-size reproduction Of the document.

Information might also be added to the system In several ways The evaluated intelligence provided by analysts of all agencies would be entered through the same Flex owriter-type device used for querying the system. Raw information selected and extracted from documentscree rung panel would be entered as part of an index storage file. Tbe documentswould be microphotographed and placed in the rawstorage section of the system.

The analytic application of the system will cover wardamage assessment, and determining the economic effects of military action, as foreshadowed In the mathematical models we have described. It will also cover target materials andcontrol, an almost independent area,airly routine application of processing principles. It will provide document security control for all the highly classifieddisseminated through the computer. It will makeore accurate formulation of collection requirements andeans of evaluating both the requirements process and the collection process. Even our comparatively limitedwith the models we have been using gives us ground to anticipate that actual application of tbe proposed system will stimulate continuing development of new analytic techniques to enhance the capabilities of Air Force intelligence

For target Intelligenceystem is Indeed goinga quantum jump ahead, and none too soon. The mosttarget analysis effort is now directed againstmissiles (especially operational Launchir(particularly the SAGEnd command control

systems, objectives around which the most stringentare arrayed The most direct and forthright advances

against these objectives could comeuccessfulefector.

Air Tweeting

But the more important the target to us, the more important It Is to the Soviet that be deny us Information on it, and the tougher the collection task. Some people seem even to believe that he can continue to be totally successful In this dental in the areas where it really counts. This brings us beck to mass data handling and the possibilities it offers. The realistic solution in these high priority areas may be to break Into the complex of activities associated with the target and let them lead us to It.

What Is suggested is that we collect and process the less sensitive information, of which there may be an abundance, along with the sensitive. This approach is not new; intelligence analysts have always recognized that bits and fragments of information about persons, places, things, and movements can when assembled, analyzed, and synthesized enable us toweeping end runormidable security barrier. What is new is that science has come up with the technology that will permit us to use this practicecale andpeed never before possible. The exploitation now made possible of the vast amount of data already on hand in different forms in many agencies offers immediate promise. It gives impetus to the Air Forces effort to develop yet betterfor the mass handling of data; for the consequences of failure to provide target information in these critical Melds are grave indeed.

Lest the Impression be left that target analysis beginswith data on Individual Installations, It is importantout the picture somewhat. As the Soviet nuclearcapability and military might in general haveand greater proportions the targeting emphasisfrom economic and industrial targets to militarytheir Immediate supporting resources. Furthermore,become more important than ever to draw the fullof the effects oftranslate the physicalcalculated to result from planned attacks and the military Inventories of men and materiel Intopoet-attack operational capability. The criteria for the se- of targets and target systems lie in thethese effects; and in this sense effects analysis is theand director of target selection.

Air Targeting

It is clear that the models and data handling developments described in this and preceding papers all contribute in great measure to the central work of target selection and effects analysis. But this isart of the picture: the keystone of the effort is the human being, the target analyst, who emerges as tbe manager, collator, and interpreter of data,the machines, guiding the collectors, using finished intelligence produced by other analysts in their specialized fields, and finally producing integrated intelligence on live enemy forcesommand basis. In these force studies the mterrelationships of the forces, their bases, support facilities, and restraints of time, space, command, communications, and competition for common support items such as transportation and fuel are analyzed in detail.

The force study is preparedommand-wide basis. The producer in effect puts on the enemy hat and examines the interrelationships of the forces in his command, say the First Long Range Air Army, the installations they occupy, thefacilities and activities necessary for their continuedtheir training and maneuvers. This presentation of real-life force intelligence gives new meaning to the importance of targets and target systems. It provides an Integrated rational basis for the prediction of wartime deployment and missions and the prediction of qualitative and quantitative peacetime growth Finally it provides the framework within which targets and target systems may be nominated forlear understanding of the reasons they are nominated, and, through analysis of the output from machine runs on the damage and contaminationealistic interpretation of the operational effects of given attacks.

The preparation of force studies Is under way. Onecompleted on the Soviet Northern Naval Fleet,the Ground Forces in the Caucasus area. Studiesblueprint the opportunities for air action againstforces which threaten the United States and Its alliesbe maintained current for immediate application inand war gaming.- i-^

Future Data Problems

As the target intelligence analyst strains to see what lies ahead he is awed. As he thinks towards he realizes that he must deal with enemy weapon systems not yet to

Ait Targeting

being, ones which Soviet strategists are currently engaged in planning to bring into the Soviet arsenal at that time.they will attempt to outdo US and Allied weaponQuantitatively, they will try to provide so many and varied means for fast delivery of nuclear weapons that USwill be Insufficient to fend off the attacks and US offenses not quick or massive enough to neutralise the Soviet capability. It is the target analyst who must wrestle with the realities of this problem and figure out how to cope with the threat.

In this future period the collection and evaluation of target data will be performed with improved technology, andwill be reached and decisions made with greater speed-Some of the technology for collection devices can be predicted now. For example, aerospace vehiclesariety of sensingradar.data In volumes never before dreamed of. The prospect that unfriendlycan look into each others' back yards day in and day out Is going torofound effect upon what they decide to try to bide, how they decide to hide it, and what they decide is Just not worth hiding. Some of the new data, for example infrared detector readings which give warning of missiles being prepared for launching or being launched, will go directly to warning centers for immediate decision on US and AlliedAll of it will be grist for the analyst, to be evaluated against the background of the data stored Inr some Improved system, and all will automatically be added to this massive store From it the analyst, using advancedmust draw conclusions on which to base action in an era when minutes can decide eternity.

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