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3 Information and Communications The technologies covered in this chapter include distributed collaboration, human-centered systems, intelligent systems, planning and decision aids, software engineering, communications and internetworking, and offensive and defensive information warfare. These technologies are listed in Figure 3.1 with some rough indication of interdependency. Military Context Many studies of future military needs and capabilities have made the following points, which are reiterated here because they informed the panel's deliberations as it considered information and communications technologies for the Navy and Marine Corps of the future: The size of the military will decrease—hence more will have to be accomplished with fewer people, platforms, weapons, and supporting systems. The nature of military missions will become increasingly more varied, with many crisis situations being of short duration and high intensity, and occurring simultaneously with other operations. The predominant mode of crisis intervention will be via joint task forces, often combined with international forces. The above points require that distributed collaborating teams share a consistent view of the situations they face, allowing rapid decisions and coordinated action. The military leadership recognizes that information dominance is key to military success and that even the most advanced weapons cannot be leveraged
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FIGURE 3.1 The key information technologies. effectively without it. Given the naval forces' unique mission of force projection from the sea, they face unique challenges in the sphere of information dominance. Even these unique challenges, however, must be addressed within the context of interoperability with other Services and the forces of other nations. Definition of Information Technologies The technologies included under the heading of information are vast and strongly interrelated. Many information technologies feed other technologies and at the same time are dependent on the ones they feed. Because these interrelationships are so complex, it is difficult to organize the relevant technologies into some simple grouping with straightforward relationships to one another. Therefore, the following description should not be considered as a universal truth, but simply as one organizational perspective. Broadly speaking, information technology can be thought of as the underlying capability of computation and connectivity, and their interface with human operators, to apply reasoning power and distributed knowledge to various types of problem solving. Figure 3.2 illustrates the relationships of these elements. The first (inner)-level foundation is the computational hardware and the connectivity. The succeeding levels get at the raw physical capabilities of computation and communication through software. The third layer is that of intelligent systems combined with planning and decision aids and then the abilities of these systems to form effective partnerships with humans. These layers together provide cognitive support for distributed collaboration, which is in the outermost layer. The issues of offensive and defensive information warfare, illustrated in Figure 3.2 as bugs in the system, ultimately pervade the entire set of technologies as they work together to provide a knowledge-rich environment for the warfighter.
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Distributed Collaboration Description Distributed collaboration refers to the use of human-computer interfaces, networks, and computer hardware and software technologies to mediate person-to-person interaction and communication. Three key goals of distributed collaboration are (1) the gathering of appropriate problem solvers together across time and space for rapid response in time-critical situations, (2) providing access to and ensuring availability of appropriate information resources across time and space within the context of a task, and (3) enhancing the effectiveness of collaborating problem solvers. In addition, there are two long-range goals for distributed collaboration. The first is to achieve a feeling of "as good as being there" through remote-presence technology. The second is to achieve a level of distributed collaboration efficiency that is "better than being there" through information augmentation. This second goal is important for improving collaboration efficiency even when the collaborators are co-located, particularly when the collaborative task takes place over time. It is expected that both of these goals will be met for normal commercial situations by 2035. The challenge for the Department of the Navy is to ensure that these goals can be met for situations unique to naval forces such as cooperative engagement. FIGURE 3.2 The layers of elements that make up information technologies.
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Relevance The information revolution has brought individuals the capability to access information through wireless and high-bandwidth wireline technologies with nearly ubiquitous coverage. Because of the large distances that often separate people and resources, the Department of the Navy especially stands to benefit from developments in this revolution through the effective use of people and information regardless of their location. Technology Status and Trends Today, naval communications are primarily accomplished via low-band-width voice and text. The operational use of distributed collaboration technology in its simplest forms, such as video teleconferencing, is uncommon. Higher-bandwidth communications via satellite will enable video teleconferencing among ships and shore assets. Commercial collaboration tools, such as "groupware" and shared whiteboards, will enable limited sharing of information in distributed groups. The commercial collaboration marketplace is rapidly evolving in four primary areas: groupware, such as Lotus Notes, newsgroups, and chat functions; two-dimensional and three-dimensional multiuser domains (MUDs), such as the Time Warner Palace and products from Worlds Inc.; teleconferencing tools, such as video teleconferencing and Internet teleconferencing; and World Wide Web-based tools, such as Netscape Navigator. Currently, these technology areas appear to be on somewhat divergent paths. Future Impact of Technology Trends on Naval Operations Higher-bandwidth interaction will enable widely distributed individuals to meet and understand time-critical information in a shared electronic environment that provides an adequate illusion of shared presence. Future command centers will exploit a range of technologies that are now under development in both commercial and military sectors, including speech recognition and synthesis, high-resolution projection displays (two- and three-dimensional), shared information visualization, resource and mission planning and simulation, and information finding and fusion. These technologies will be integrated in a cohesive system that provides the means for groups of individuals to understand complex situations. Together, shared presence and advanced information understanding will make distributed collaboration much more effective than any form of collaboration today. Most decision-making processes that involve multiple individuals will be affected.
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Development Needs Commercial collaboration will continue to target the mass market using low-end capabilities of computers and communications to address collaboration. Other key government-funded initiatives will be required to utilize high-end components and services and provide support for mobility between varying levels of capability. Basic technology advances needed include high-quality, low-cost, three-dimensional rendering; multimedia processing; speech recognition; speech synthesis, avatar (human representation) animation; three-dimensional MUDs; greater network bandwidth; global networks; symbolic compression; and improved network programming languages such as Java. Looking forward a few years, lower-cost, higher-resolution displays will make immersive interfaces more widespread, including personal (head-worn) displays and large-screen projection theaters. The developmental challenges for the Department of the Navy lie in three areas. The first is rapid prototyping of collaborative support systems for naval-specific situations. An example would be sailors on multiple ships and marines on land collaborating over a crisis-resolution game plan. These prototyped systems would use primarily commercial components complemented with some capabilities coming out of the government laboratories. A second development challenge is the need to support collaboration with lower, rather than higher, bandwidth, which is contrary to commercial trends. The third challenge is the need to support research in those focus areas that, during the prototyping efforts, are found to have weaknesses. The emphasis should be placed on problems considered to be unique to the Department of the Navy. These would most likely include metaphors for collaboration that are different from the commercial trend of room-based metaphors. Time Scale for Development and Insertion Military use of distributed collaboration technology is currently under way and is benefiting greatly from rapid commercial growth. The key issues that must be addressed in the use of commercial technologies are difficult and will require significant R&D to overcome. These include information and battle-space visualization, personnel, network and information security, new methods of interaction, and global wireless coverage. Simple prototypes are being field-tested today and can become operational for the Department of the Navy within the next 5 years. Improvements in collaboration technology are dependent on improvements in many other technologies such as human-centered systems, communications and networks, displays, and communications.
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Time Scale for System Insertion Increased effectiveness through distributed collaboration will occur incrementally as the technology matures and advances in the commercial realm are incorporated into naval systems. Window-based video-teleconferencing tools will be incorporated as newer computing resources replace outdated equipment. Virtual presence and ''better than being there" capabilities should begin to appear within the next 10 years and continue to improve during the next 20 years. The challenge for the Department of the Navy is that the major benefits from successful insertion of collaboration technology will not be achieved without accompanying changes to naval processes. It has been demonstrated many times over the last several decades that simply automating or improving the current process with information technology provides only marginal improvements. Major gains are achieved only when new processes are developed to take advantage of the new technologies. Foreign Technology Status and Trends Significant resources are being allocated in Europe and Japan to develop tools and infrastructure to support distributed collaboration for commercial business. Telecommunications companies in Japan and Europe are conducting efforts in virtual teleconferencing. Large foreign investments are likely to continue and to grow in Web-based technologies that support collaboration. Human-Centered Systems Technology Description Human-centered system (HCS) technology refers to the broad spectrum of hardware, software, and human factors disciplines that enable humans to effectively interact with information systems, computers, sensors, machines, and other humans. This technology draws from a variety of software fields (e.g., visualization, information presentation, human-computer interaction, computer graphics, human tracking, graphical user interfaces, distributed and object-oriented systems, speech understanding), hardware devices (e.g., visual, auditory, tactile, force displays, tracking sensors, graphics and general-purpose computers, networks), and human factors disciplines (e.g., experimental psychology, cognitive science, physiology). HCS technology involves multiple human modes of interaction and sensing. The goal is to enable information-processing technology to be of greatest benefit to humans. Achieving it requires completely natural means of interaction and the design of effective cognitive support.
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Relevance Any hardware or software system in the Department of the Navy that interfaces with humans will rely on HCS technology. The sophistication of modern technology has outpaced the capacity of humans to use it effectively. Information overload is a major problem that will only become more critical. For example, tactical combat information centers (CICs) are designed to provide operators with information from a bewildering range of sensors, including radar, surface radar, weapons radar, sonar, infrared-sensitive devices, and cameras, as well as the naval "infosphere" that includes maps, audio transmissions, and written information. Commanders and operators must rapidly integrate these data and make decisions based on real-time assessments of their situation. The time-critical, high-stress nature of the environment, in addition to the large volumes of information, can result in data overload and decreased efficiency and effectiveness. HCS technology aims to prevent human overload by enhancing human performance, complementing human strengths, and compensating for human weaknesses. Technology Status and Trends The Department of the Navy uses human interface technology in command-and-control systems, weapons system interfaces, mission planning aids, simulators, training, logistics, missile guidance, intelligence information access, as well as the traditional administrative functions. The majority of human system interfaces in use today are based on the windows, icons, mouse, pointer (WIMP) interface or its derivatives, first developed in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The trends in human-centered systems are toward the use of multimodal interaction; visualization in three-dimensional, more immersive, virtual-reality systems; and intelligent assistants. The Department of the Navy uses variants of the WIMP interface that typically include displays (sometimes color), function keys, and trackballs. Leading-edge efforts are under way to develop and evaluate multimodal interaction techniques and three-dimensional visualization for naval operations such as the Air Force Threat Evaluation and Weapon Assignment (TEWA). Future Impact of Technology Trends on Department of the Navy Operations Future system effectiveness will depend on human-centered systems approaches that enable humans to interact using systems in more natural ways with three-dimensional vision, hearing, speech, gestures, and touch. Improved situation assessment will result from full human involvement in the information environment, characterized by immersive virtual-reality techniques. Collaboration
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will be facilitated via electronic means that enable individuals who are distributed around the world to interact and manipulate information jointly. Widespread information availability will require vast improvements in the interfaces for mobile and wearable computing systems. Development Needs The current ongoing revolution in computing and communications will drive dramatic improvements in machine and human interfaces, which will be required to realize the benefits of increased information and communications capabilities. These improvements will be enabled by technologies such as high-resolution miniature image sources for personal (head-mounted) displays and projection systems; wireless human tracking and monitoring technology; continuous, speaker-independent speech recognition; and low-cost, portable rendering hardware. Information presentation will be a key component of future systems and requires extensive research and development to identify modes and methods of visualization and multisensory presentation. Much of this technology will be developed in the commercial realm because there are large consumer markets driving rapid development. On the other hand, the use of these enabling technologies in applications of interest to the Department of the Navy, such as command-and-control operator workstations, will require extensive adaptation and testing to be effective, much more so than in previous interfaces. This is a result of increased coupling and synergy between the human-computer system and the task at hand. The key to exploiting the advances in technology will be to take a human-centered systems approach to the creation of specific applications, exploiting the strengths of both the human operator and computer. We have only barely scratched the surface in the development of revolutionary new methods of interaction, and careful evaluations of iterative improvements of these systems are almost nonexistent. The Department of the Navy needs to take a rapid iterative approach to refining the development of human-centered systems. This would include human-factors design and rapid-interface prototyping based on immersive multimodal interaction, followed by evaluation and reprototyping in a number of potentially high payoff applications. The commercial world will drive the development of enabling technologies such as displays and CPU performance. It is unlikely, however, that sufficient effort will be aimed either at the basic science underlying human interaction or at the specific application of new technologies to the Navy Department domain. The Department of the Navy should fund both types of efforts. In particular, the DOD has not focused sufficient resources on the use of immersive interaction technologies outside of the training domain.
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Foreign Technology Status and Trends Both Europe and Japan are investing in next-generation, human-centered system technology including visualization, virtual environments, and hardware. Significant application use of advanced HCS technology in foreign commercial markets such as entertainment and education is expected within the next 5 years. Time Scale for Development and Insertion Currently, evaluation of a large number of next-generation human-centered systems in a rich naval infosphere is not possible. Prototypes that span the spectrum of possible approaches should first be evaluated without resorting to operational situations on board ships. Virtual prototypes of human-centered systems provide a means for testing concepts and envisioning future possibilities (such as the Naval Research and Development [NRaD] Command Center of the Future); however, rich, interactive simulations of the naval infosphere that can support evaluation of revolutionary new approaches are not accessible. Post-WIMP interface technology is beginning to be developed for Department of the Navy applications and should be available in fielded prototypes within 5 years. Much more research is needed to exploit the vast potential of human-centered systems. Virtual environment (VE) technology is beginning to be developed for naval applications (other than training) and will accelerate within the next 5 years as more immersive displays and more stable tracking systems are developed commercially. Prototype three-dimensional visualization systems, the first step toward the use of VEs, have been tested in naval applications (e.g., Air Force TEWA) and should become more prevalent within 5 years. Evaluations that identify benefits of these technologies are needed. More advanced interaction techniques such as direct brain interfaces are possible in the 20-year time frame but will require significantly greater understanding of brain function to be of general use. Intelligent Systems Description In general, intelligent systems are considered to be those systems that do not follow a simple set of procedural instructions and do not provide a single predictable solution to a problem, but instead involve heuristics, sometimes have natural language understanding as an element, are predicated on some set of captured knowledge, and frequently have the ability to learn.
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Relevance Intelligent systems share the ability to be of greater assistance to people in a greater range of complex situations. Intelligent systems will also be used for machine control, but the emphasis here will be for people-in-the-loop systems. Many of the software systems of the future will be considered to be intelligent, and hence everything said for software engineering also applies. Technology Status and Trends Intelligent system components show up in a variety of places today. Some examples are pattern matching for automatic target recognition (minimal success here), image understanding for assistance to image analysis, scheduling and resource allocation, sensor fusion, and some expert systems in simulation and maintenance assistance. Some experimental command-and-control systems today use knowledge-based database access. Future Impact of Technology Trends on Naval Operations In the future there will be extensive use of better agents in a wide range of areas. Speech and gesture recognition will be used as a common human-system interface along with head-mounted virtual-reality displays. Machine translation will be used to provide real-time translation of military messages from one language to another. Unmanned underwater vehicles will become common, ATR will continually improve, and medical needs on board manned ships will be fully met with telemedicine and telesurgery. Intelligence will become a part of almost all software applications. One of the limitations of intelligent systems has been the great difficulty of capturing better knowledge in order to have a base of common sense. Another limitation is the difficulty in establishing a hierarchy of knowledge. If knowledge has been captured for one application, it is difficult to take advantage of that knowledge for a new application. These difficulties are currently being addressed, and the expectation is that significant improvements will be forthcoming. Intelligent agents are software packages that are endowed with a certain amount of knowledge that makes it possible for them to carry out tasks autonomously and to respond to changes in their environment. There is an increase in the availability of systems that have embodied in them a knowledge base and can respond to a greater range of situations rather than simply incorporation an embedded sequence of instructions. Intelligent agents may have a role to play in military mission planning and rapid response to changing events. The complexity of the battlefield is such that ordinary software cannot provide much assistance to a commander in the course of rapid replanning. Future systems will include intelligence systems support enabled by intelligent
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agents or other forms of intelligent systems technology. All of them will require layers of intelligent systems, each of which will have embedded in it significant knowledge. Intelligent agents will be continually monitoring the battlefield situation and will be able to make predictions and take the appropriate action. Impact of Trends on Naval Operations The role of ships in land-strike missions will continue to grow in conjunction with the increased accuracy and potency of smart munitions. Precision-strike capability, increased battlefield awareness, smaller crews on ships and submarines, better collaboration with joint forces, and in general a higher level of preparedness will be enabled by the proliferation of intelligent systems. Developments Needed In order for the Department of the Navy to capitalize on the general advances in intelligent systems technology, the Navy must invest in application domain centers of excellence and begin to develop shared ontologies and common knowledge bases. Groups at these centers must insist on vendors using common knowledge representations so that they all can utilize the shared ontologies and ever-expanding sets of knowledge bases. The development of intelligent systems technology will be driven by a combination of the commercial world and DOD. The Department of the Navy must collaborate with other elements of the DOD to help in developing the necessary standards or at least a useful level of interoperability across ontologies and knowledge representations. The Department of the Navy must then do the application domain work for itself; coupled with work in software architecture, this will allow the Navy Department to conduct intelligent acquisition, guiding vendors in exactly the direction it needs, with each acquisition complementing the others. Time Scale for Development and Insertion Ontology work for a selected small domain could begin now, with prototypes being ready in a year or two. In the near term, the use of agent-based programming and the Java programming language to implement agents is progressing rapidly. The Department of the Navy can begin to insert some of this technology now. It should be pointed out that the implementation of Java will give rise to significant security challenges that must be addressed. In the mid term, over the next 10 years, advances in the area of knowledge capture will reduce the cost and time required for the Navy Department to develop and evolve expert systems. The hardest problem now is that of building hierarchical intelligent systems. Such capabilities as knowledge reuse, knowledge interoperability, and new ways of accomplishing reasoning over large
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In part stimulated by the results of the studies noted above, President Clinton recently chartered a new Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection6 that will attempt to bring military and civilian knowledge about IW issues together to ensure that the critical national infrastructure—telecommunications, transportation, power, medical services, and so forth—receives appropriate attention with respect to protection from both physical and IW threats. Because of the Navy and Marine Corps' operational dependence on the nation's infrastructure, the Department of the Navy should participate in this activity and assist in the development of appropriate protection measures. Clearly the viability of information systems in use today, in both the civilian and military activities, is of considerable concern in light of IW threats—particularly as they are exploited by other nations that might be potential adversaries of the United States. Categories of Computer and Information System Disruption To establish the context for introducing the emerging disruption technology associated with very high peak power UWB RF impulse technologies, the scope of the variety of major computer and information system disruptions is described below. Software Attacks System disruptions of information networks and their supporting computers may be caused by use of external computer terminals—such as those used by hackers. The media have given particular attention to these kinds of disruptions because of the perceived and often colorful role of the hacker in carrying them out. System disruptions may occur as a result of improper software code, either inserted in the system as it was developed or inserted into the system after it became operational, perhaps by a hacker. The improper code may be the result of software errors of commission and omission or the result of tampering. Software is particularly vulnerable to tampering during the development process because many people may have access to the low-level code during development. Security and integrity of the software development process were serious issues in the Strategic Defense Initiative. Some system software threats associated with IW are categorized below: Computer virus. Probably the best known of these threats, although not usually considered in that context, computer viruses are those programs that stealthily infect other programs and then replicate and spread within a computer 6 Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection. 1996. Executive Order 13010, July 15.
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system or network. Typically small, they are difficult to detect; some of the more recent versions have active antidetection protection measures. Modern computer viruses may be encrypted, compressed, or polymorphic to reduce the probability of detection. Covert channel. A communications channel that allows information to be transferred in a way that the owners of the system did not intend. Variations include cover storage channels and cover timing channels. Use of a covert channel could be a way to insert a virus into a computer system. Data manipulation. With the increasing technological capability for manipulation of data come opportunities to use those capabilities for nefarious purposes. The composition and content of pictures as well as databases are vulnerable to advanced techniques of manipulation. Flaw. A flaw is defined as an error of commission, omission, or oversight in a system that allows protection mechanisms to be by-passed. The insertion of a flaw into a system could be enabled with other IW weapons, such as the use of coherent RF weapons, over networks from remote sites or could be designed in by an agent-in-place. Logic bomb. A logic bomb is a piece of code buried within a larger computer system that executes when a specific system state is realized. An example could be a program that checks for the presence of a piece of data within a file, say, an employee's name within a payroll list, and when the specified logic state is reached—the existence of the employee's name is false—the bomb explodes; for example, the software program may command that the entire system memory be erased. Logic torpedo. Weapons like viruses are essentially uncontrolled. A weapon that can be aimed at one or more specific systems and then released through cyberspace to hunt down its target, known as a logic torpedo, would be very useful. Time bomb. Similar to the logic bomb, this type of software program waits for a specific time to be realized and then executes. Timing weapon. Also thought of as insidious clocks, these weapons affect the timing of internal clocks to throw off system synchronization. Trap door. A trap door is a hidden software or hardware mechanism that permits system protection mechanisms to be circumvented. It is activated in some nonapparent manner—such as a special random key sequence at a terminal. Anyone who has ever programmed knows that despite best efforts, no program ever works correctly the first time (or even the first 10 times). Trap doors are a common safety step used to make sure there is always a way into the program to fix bugs, no matter what the problem may be. The utility of a trap door to provide access for IW purposes is self-evident. Trojan horse. As the image invoked by its name implies, a Trojan horse is a computer program with an apparently or actually useful function that contains additional functions that surreptitiously carry out tasks that the user of the
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program would not necessarily execute willingly. For example, a spreadsheet program could contain additional logic to make surreptitious copies of all of the data files on a system. The user of the spreadsheet program would not be aware of those activities occurring while working with the legitimate functions of the program. Worm. Similar to viruses, worms are self-replicating but not parasitic; that is, they do not attach to other programs. As demonstrated dramatically by the Internet worm of 1988, they can deny legitimate users access to systems by overwhelming those systems with their progeny. Worms illustrate attacks against availability, whereas other weapons may attack integrity of data or compromise confidentiality. Disruption Caused by External RF Signals Radio-frequency energy at the right amplitude and frequency can affect the performance of microelectronics hardware used in computer and information systems. Depending on the nature of the RF signal, a wide range of deleterious effects can occur such as burning out electronic components, disruption of internal logic that may require rebooting or reinitializing the system, interference with the reception of desired signals (jamming), and the introduction of spurious and confusing information (spoofing). RF signals that can disrupt information and communication systems can be classified as follows: extraneous radio signals from other RF systems, EW jamming and spoofing signals, nuclear-produced EMP signals, high-power microwave energy (HPM), and as a subset of HPM, the very high peak power UWB RF impulse signals. UWB RF impulse signals have both an offensive (disruption capability) and defensive aspect (mitigation)—both aspects need to be considered. Extraneous Interfering Radio Signals Computers and information systems can be disrupted by radio signals coming from other systems. Although the disruption may not be purposeful, these interfering radio signals can nevertheless be extremely deleterious and may not be mitigated easily. Some of these interfering signals may be generated by local oscillators in adjacent systems or by static electricity. Lightning-generated impulses have been found to interfere with the guidance computers on space launches; static electricity generated by carpets has caused the failure of computers, and precipitation static generated by aircraft has interfered with the functioning of aircraft computers when not properly dispersed by appropriate wicks. For example, the Global Positioning System (GPS) operates with virtually a zero signal-to-noise ratio. Almost any other signal that falls within the bandwidth of the GPS receiver can disrupt the ability of the GPS receiver to provide position, track, and velocity information. In one instance, the 13th harmonic
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from a local oscillator in an aircraft very high frequency omnidirectional range (VOR) navigation receiver was of sufficient strength to totally disable the functioning of the GPS system. Because of concerns about interference, the British have expressed alarm over the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration's plans to discontinue the support of the existing VOR navigation systems in favor of using augmented GPS in the Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS). This is scheduled to happen in 2000, long before more capable satellite-borne high-power GPS transmitters will be available. The vulnerability of computers and information systems to disruption by high-power interfering signals being radiated for other purposes is a vulnerability to modern information systems that must not be overlooked. To address this issue, the government has put in place a special organization, the Electromagnetic Compatibility Analysis Center (ECAC), to ensure minimal disruption of government systems resulting from improper use of allocated frequencies. Electronic Warfare Signals Electronic warfare has been an effective warfighting technology for some time. For the purposes of this report, EW activities related to the intercept and ion exploitation of enemy signals and spoofing are not discussed here as they do not by themselves lead to disrupted computers and information systems but involve the collection of electronic signal intelligence. EW technologies underwent rapid evolution during World War II when new warfighting radio communications and radar capabilities used by both the Axis and Allied forces gave rise, in turn, to systems to disrupt these new communications and remote-sensing capabilities. Since World War II, EW capabilities have continued to evolve—prompted, in part, by perceived new radar and communication system threats, and as a result of the experience gained during the Korean, Vietnam, and Cold wars. EW signals can be used to spoof, disrupt, or jam RF systems that are integrated into information systems. Disrupting signals can find their way into the RF front ends of the information network receiving systems or into the RF front end of sensor systems. The EW approach takes advantage of the fact that extraneous RF signals can disrupt functioning of the system by raising the noise level of the system being attacked, by introducing extraneous signals that overwhelm the processing capability of the system, or by using EW signals to spoof the ability of the system to carry out its intended functions. EW offensive actions offer the tactical warfighter the operational capability to defeat the effectiveness of enemy electronics-based communications and radar sensor systems. The ability to operate U.S. information systems in the presence of jamming, especially by sophisticated signal wave forms, will require more attention by the developers of information systems.
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Nuclear Weapon Electromagnetic Pulses The detonation of nuclear weapons causes a number of different types of energetic radiation to be emitted. The high-energy x-rays, neutrons, and other emissions can disrupt the functioning of many solid-state electronic components. This type of disruption is labeled as transient radiation effects on electronics. Another type of disruptive emission is the very high energy EMPs produced by the detonation of nuclear weapons. EMP concerns have prompted extensive Department of Energy (DOE) studies of how nuclear weapons generate such emissions and their possible effects on military systems. Following serious disruptions of power and other electronics systems during the U.S. nuclear test programs, the DOD subsequently initiated efforts to find ways to prevent EMP signals from entering C3 facilities and burning out electronic equipment. Based on many years of EMP interference measurements, a special set of handbooks was prepared and made available to system designers that describes in detail how to harden systems and facilities against the disruptions that can be caused by EMP signals. As a result of this engineering know-how regarding EMP protection, many important U.S. C3 facilities are appropriately hardened against EMP, and some satellite systems also incorporate EMP-hardening attention (e.g., MILSTAR). High-power Microwave Disruptions The identification of the existence of nuclear EMP signals during U.S. nuclear test programs raised the feasibility of developing nonnuclear HPM sources to destroy electronic systems. This concept encouraged a wide range of DOD-supported R&D activities in HPM transmitter developments, with research carried out in both government and industrial laboratories. These efforts have evolved, expanded, and matured into what has become known today as the High-power Microwave effort. Until quite recently, virtually all of the HPM developments have focused on obtaining very large average power transmitters capable of disrupting or destroying electronic components. Laboratory-based experimental HPM facilities are very large—consisting of rooms full of equipment—and are not suitable for use in tactical warfighting scenarios. HPM sources may, however, have practical applications at fixed antiballistic missile (ABM) facilities as adjuncts to conventional missile-based ABM approaches. In addition, interest in potential HPM weapons was stimulated by intelligence reports about Soviet advances in HPM-generation technologies—many still consider the Russians well ahead of the United States in HPM research. Although operational HPM weapons have entered the development process, to date none has been successfully fielded. As with EMP disruption, a set of engineering handbooks has been prepared that deals with the various techniques of protecting electronic systems from HPM disruption signals.
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Ultrawide-band Radio-frequency Impulse Disruptions Ultrawide-band radio-frequency impulse signals consist of very-short-duration, very-high-peak-power RF pulse signals. The duration of the impulses is on the order of one or two RF cycles (a nanosecond or two), and they may have peak signal powers of a few hundred kilowatts to hundreds of gigawatts, depending on the antennas used to radiate them. Most UWB RF impulse transmitters can generate repetitive impulses with pulse rate frequencies up to 100 kHz. Some consider UWB RF impulses to be part of the HPM family. Proponents of HPM technologies have found that some electronics can be affected if the HPM signals are modulated with specific frequencies that match those in the electronics to be targeted. The panel has chosen to consider UWB RF impulse signals as a separate category primarily because they disrupt rather than attempt to destroy or burn out electronic circuitry. UWB RF impulse transmitters generate extremely high peak power signals, whereas most HPM transmitters attempt to generate high-average-power signals. Also because of the small-size, light-weight nature of the UWB RF impulse transmitters, they are more readily deployable than are HPM transmitters. UWB RF signals can disrupt most of the computers and information systems in use today. UWB RF-induced disruptions are typically transient, but they can cause a system to require rebooting before it can again become functional. Variations in the pulse rate frequency can significantly affect the nature of the disruptions observed. UWB RF impulse signals tend to be disruptive regardless of the existing internal clock rates, but their disruptive potential may be enhanced by matching the pulse rate frequency to the internal clock speed of the targeted equipment. The wide bandwidth of the UWB RF impulses—as much as several gigahertz in some cases—enhances their ability to disrupt a variety of systems, although detailed understanding of how UWB RF pulses couple to electronic systems is not currently available. One type of fundamental UWB RF impulse technology is the bulk avalanche semiconductor switch (BASS). BASS operates on the principle that a solid-state chip, when illuminated by a laser, will short-circuit in a few picoseconds. When some 10,000 to 12,000 volts are momentarily placed across a GaAs semiconductor device, and the switch is placed in a simple RF circuit, the resulting avalanche of current produces approximately 1 megawatt of RF energy that is essentially one RF cycle in duration. A single BASS module, complete with timing circuits, is about 2 x 2 x 6 inches in size and weighs less than a pound. All it requires to function as an RF source is an external trigger generator and a battery. The pulse repetition frequency that can be achieved with BASS devices is on the order of 10 kHz. As a result, the average energy in the repetitive pulse train is small, and it is the peak power that affects digital microelectronics functioning. RF impulses with center frequencies from 50 to 2,000 MHz have been generated
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using the BASS technology. Through the use of precision timing, several BASS switches can be combined to form a much higher peak power system. When configured in the form of an antenna array, peak power levels of 1 GW have been obtained, and because of the gain of the array, a 100-GW ERP can be obtained. The individual BASS units making up the array can be timed—equivalent to phasing in a more conventional phased array antenna—so that the beam can be steered over a 60° angular cone. Because of the high bandwidth of UWB RF impulses, they have noise-like characteristics when detected by most narrow-band receivers. Using UWB RF signals as a jammer source introduces the possibility that enemy systems could be jammed, whereas friendly systems could be designed to accommodate the periodic impulses. A possible application of this concept is the ability to jam GPS and deny it to an adversary but still allow friendly forces to continue to use it without degradation—a scheme that might be called intelligent jamming. Because UWB RF impulse transmitter systems are relatively small and light-weight and require only modest levels of prime power, they appear to be suited for tactical applications. They also appear to be the only RF disruption technology compact enough to be deployed on satellites. Information Warfare Related to Space The possibility of conducting offensive IW actions against space systems has been considered, including interfering with the functioning of ground terminals and interfering with the functioning of satellites by using ground-based HPM systems. In most instances, such electromagnetic-based antisatellite (ASAT) efforts have been based on HPM technologies that are capable of burning out or destroying electronics in the satellite systems but that require huge facilities and copious amounts of power. Moreover, there are treaties and space laws that preclude such destructive actions. The recent emergence of new transmitter technologies that permit the generation of UWB RF impulses opens the door to new disruption capabilities—and using such transmitters in space seems particularly practical. Do UWB RF Impulse Systems Pose a Threat to U.S. Information Systems Now or in the Future? Countries other than the United States have extensive background in the development of RF weaponry. For example, the former Soviet Union pioneered the development of UWB RF impulse technology, and this technology is now being offered to other countries by both Russia and the United States. It is expected that in future conflicts the United States will encounter enemies using UWB RF weapons to disrupt U.S. information systems, and this will require that U.S. information systems be appropriately protected. Some protection approaches
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are available from prior EMP hardening efforts, but additional methods are needed to counter extremely high peak powers and high-frequency components of UWB RF impulses. Other Related Technologies High-average-power transmitter systems from the HPM program may still have practical utility, especially when such microwave signals are modulated in ways to have a maximum effect on digital electronics. High-average-power HPM transmitter systems that are best suited for large ground-based facilities may find use in ballistic missile defense applications. The existence of very-high-power HPM RF transmitter sources will allow for other kinds of directed-energy weapon (DEW) disruptions, e.g., linear accelerators that can be used to generate a focused beam of secondary x-rays—where RF shielding and filtering protection approaches are totally ineffective. Development Drivers The U.S. military does not have to develop all of the defensive IW capabilities independently of the defensive IW technologies available from the commercial sector. In most cases, the technologies that will support military defensive IW needs in the hacker and software categories are being developed more rapidly in the civilian information system environments than they are in the military environments. Defensive and offensive IW activities associated with emerging UWB RF impulse technologies will be more suitable for military development than commercial. A major increase in efforts is warranted to develop defenses for information and communication systems that offer protection against this new capability. Offensive developments of this technology not only should be considered for disrupting enemy information infrastructures but also should be used to evaluate the vulnerabilities of U.S. information infrastructures. The panel believes that the Navy Department must make every effort to work on both the defensive and offensive IW development programs in close coordination and cooperation with the other military departments, with joint chiefs of staff, and with operational commanders. The Department of the Navy should establish close working relationships with the recently formed presidential commission for the protection of critical infrastructure and undertake, where appropriate, cooperative efforts to protect infrastructure critical to naval operations, even though such infrastructure may be in the commercial sector. Time Scale for Development and Insertion There are some defensive and offensive IW prototype concepts involving the
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UWB RF impulse technologies, but to date little has happened to bring them to the operational naval forces. As such hardware and software offensive and defensive IW concepts are brought into existence, the Department of the Navy should undertake an expanded set of IW-related advanced technology demonstration exercises in which these new concepts, ideas, and capabilities are brought together and experimentally evaluated and verified. Development of both offensive and defensive IW capabilities is going on now at a modest pace. Developments should be accelerated and expanded and should be expected to continue indefinitely into the future for some time to come. Today, the United States probably has better offensive IW capabilities than it does defensive ones. The proliferation of more complex information system architectures with attendant large-scale integrated circuit electronics has caused the defensive posture associated with Navy and Marine Corps information systems to currently be far short of the robust levels needed for achieving information dominance and winning future information wars. Concluding Observations The panel presents the following observations: Emerging new UWB RF impulse transmitter systems are small and light-weight, require relatively low levels of prime power (average), and are suitable for tactical or terrorist applications. Because of their very high peak power signal, UWB RF impulses have unique capabilities to disrupt nearly all digital microelectronics hardware used in information systems. UWB RF impulse signals have the potential to pose a very serious threat to the cyber portion of the critical infrastructure. UWB RF impulse transmitter technology is being made available outside the United States and is becoming available to terrorists and potential enemies. UWB RF impulse transmitters have such low cost and complexity that many nations who might want to take down or disrupt both military and commercial information and communication systems can readily acquire the technologies to do so. Concerns exist about the paucity of defensive capabilities to mitigate these emerging UWB RF impulse weapon threats. To date, there are no confirmed examples of any use of these emerging UWB RF impulse technologies to disable U.S. military or commercial information system hardware. It is probably only a question of time before a UWB RF impulse disruption is experienced.
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Recommendations Information and networking are expected to play a dominant role in future military engagements. Rapid access to appropriate knowledge at all levels will optimize warfighting and crisis response capabilities. Within this context a number of key information-processing technologies are discussed here. Recommendations regarding these technologies for Department of the Navy consideration are as follows: The Department of the Navy should exploit evolving commercial technologies in knowledge extraction, data management, and data presentation, together with unique military technologies in data fusion and automatic target recognition to deal with the increased complexity and tempo of warfare. The Department of the Navy should engage in early exploitation of the rapid growth in commercial communications capabilities, including satellites and fiber-optic communications, to acquire the necessary increased bandwidth and diverse routing for future networking needs. The Department of the Navy should also prepare for graceful degradation of these systems at times of warfare. The Navy Department information systems should be protected against increased software and electromagnetic information warfare attacks and other vulnerabilities. The Department of the Navy should develop offensive information and electronic warfare technologies to find, identify, and attack adversary systems and to strengthen naval systems. Specific recommendations regarding IW are as follows: The segment of the Navy Department that is involved in and concerned about the survivability of the its information and communications systems should become familiar with possible disruption threats associated with UWB RF impulse signals. Ways to use these new emerging UWB RF impulse signals as offensive IW weapons should be integrated into operational systems by the EW technical community, which has an established track record of working with the military forces. The Department of the Navy should recognize both the disruption and protection aspects of the UWB RF impulse threat. Successfully solving the protection problems requires understanding how UWB RF impulse signals disrupt systems. To ensure that the United States maximizes its ability to conduct both defensive and offensive warfare, the current restrictions separating the two activities should be eliminated so that both defensive and offensive IW aspects can be considered in an integrated fashion. All hardware and companion software associated with information systems
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should have their vulnerabilities to UWB RF impulse disruption signals evaluated and mitigated where practical. Particular attention should be given encryption systems and emerging microelectromechanical systems technologies. The Department of the Navy should encourage its own intelligence activities as well as National-level7 intelligence activities to make it a high priority to track the proliferation of UWB RF impulse technologies. The Department of the Navy should make every effort to enter into cooperative activities in support of the recently formed presidential commission for protection of critical national infrastructure components as their protection will ensure that naval force uses will continue to be robust in times of military conflicts. 7 The term ''National" refers to those systems, resources, and assets controlled by the U.S. government, but not limited to the Department of Defense (DOD).
Representative terms from entire chapter: