Expanding the Use of Time/Frequency Difference of Arrival Geolocation in the Department of Defense
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The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) faces a tightening budget in the coming years. Despite the lean budget years, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) are expected to be a priority. Due to their usefulness for intelligence collection in irregular warfare (IW) and counterinsurgency (COIN), UAS were quickly fielded and sent to theater without analysis of how their intelligence sensors complemented each other. There are ways for DoD to improve the methods of employment and the integration of multi-intelligence capabilities on assets to better leverage the systems it currently owns.
The general aim of this research is to explore an area in which DoD can operate "smarter" with its proliferating UAS fleet. Specifically, this research investigates how DoD can better leverage UAS and improve multi-intelligence capabilities by expanding its geolocation capacity through the use of time/frequency-difference-of-arrival (T/FDOA) geolocation on UAS. The research sheds light on important questions that need to be answered before investing in T/FDOA-capable UAS. It first demonstrates the potential of T/FDOA geolocation in the context of how we use UAS today. It then shows what some of the "costs" of adding a T/FDOA geolocation capability to UAS might be. Finally, it explores how T/FDOA geolocation could improve multi-intelligence operations.
Table of Contents
T/FDOA Accuracy Estimation Model
When Is T/FDOA Geolocation Useful?
What Is Needed to Use T/FDOA Geolocation?
How Can T/FDOA Be Leveraged in Multi-Intelligence Operations?
Conclusions and Recommendations
Direction Finding Model
Orbit Geometry Results
CAP Allocation Model
Research conducted by
This document was submitted as a dissertation in September 2012 in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the doctoral degree in public policy analysis at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. The faculty committee that supervised and approved the dissertation consisted of Brien Alkire (Chair), Carl Rhodes, and Sherrill Lingel.
This publication is part of the RAND Corporation Dissertation series. Pardee RAND dissertations are produced by graduate fellows of the Pardee RAND Graduate School, the world's leading producer of Ph.D.'s in policy analysis. The dissertations are supervised, reviewed, and approved by a Pardee RAND faculty committee overseeing each dissertation.
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