The National Air and Space Intelligence Center's ACES-Hy payload was designed to sense explosives components by collecting data from channels in the near-visible to the edge of the mid-wave infrared spectrum, making it suitable for deciphering camouflage, as well as plumes or aerosols that would emanate from bomb-making facilities.

The 100-pound sensor flies on Predator unmanned aircraft, and is the first military version that can fly on these UAV types.

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Air Force analysts at NASIC advocated, facilitated and successfully transitioned ACES-Hy near real-time processing, exploitation and dissemination operations to two air intelligence units in Kuwait in 2014. ACES-Hy recently identified the discovery of an assessed 37 tons of illicit material for targeting considerations.

GEOINT Analysis Squadron's 1st Lt Michael Kanaan accepted the award.

"Thank you to C4ISR & Networks for the opportunity to highlight the fantastic collaboration and work not only going on at NASIC, but across the intelligence community with various analysts involved with the ACES-Hy program," said Kanaan, assistant director of operations for the GEOINT Analysis Squadron. "The full realization of taking this emerging technology and what is essentially an R&D function, and subsequently creating meaningful intelligence to give to the war fighter in a quick and precise manner, speaks volumes about the caliber of the people involved in this program, and serves in the future as a model for non-literal force employment and future increased analytic rigor across the community."