Analysts are drowning in the amount of data provided by Army sensors and those of the military writ large. And often unsaid is the burden that this overload places on the network.

“Over time, regardless of what is happening in CENTCOM or AFRICOM or in EUCOM, the demand for the aerial sensors has always increased,” Mark Kitz, director of the System of Systems Engineering team at Program Executive Office for Intelligence, Electronic Warfare and Sensors, said Aug. 9 during a panel discussion at TechNet Augusta in August, Georgia.

“Our footprint forward has decreased significantly. The intelligence community has put a lot of investment and a lot of time and a lot of capability in putting sensors forward [and] having soldiers here in [the continental United States] processing those sensors.”

While acknowledging this is a great capability, Kitz said it places a significant burden on the network. This problem will only get worse in the next 10 years with the increase in boxes and sensors, he added.

“So the challenge that our PEO is relaying to industry … is: How do we get more information, how do we still deliver that accurate and timely information whether that’s intelligence, whether that’s video for integrated base defense, whether that’s situational awareness on our survivability platforms?” he said. “How do we get all of that capability that we need without burdening the network anymore? Don’t assume that network is going to get thicker and broader and [be] there for us.”

Mark Pomerleau is a reporter for C4ISRNET, covering information warfare and cyberspace.

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