JED - July 2014 - 6

the view

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The Journal of Electronic Defense | July 2014

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ack in December, I wrote about US Air Force FY2015 budget discussions that threatened to cut funding for the EC-130H Compass Call
program and retire the fleet. The good news is that the Air Force
budget proposal submitted to Congress earlier this year did not cut
all funding for the Compass Call program. The bad news is that the
Air Force still wants to retire seven Compass Call aircraft in 2016,
which means half of the fleet.
The House Armed Services Committee (HASC) and its counterpart in the Senate (the SASC) have weighed in on the Compass Call cuts (see Washington Report
on p. 24). Both panels are concerned by the Air Force's proposed plan for the
Compass Call fleet.
The EC-130H is a joint EW asset that has been heavily utilized in Afghanistan
and Iraq for many types of electronic attack missions from defeating RCIEDs to
disrupting enemy voice communications systems in support of ground forces. Its
original mission of jamming the datalinks in enemy integrated air defense systems (IADS) is still viable, although its ability to operate against a modern IADS
with long-range radars and missiles may be somewhat limited.
What makes the EC-130H such a high-demand platform is not the power of its
jammers or the amount of jamming equipment on the aircraft. What makes these
aircraft unique is the human operators - the EWOs and linguists onboard the aircraft - who conduct the Compass Call mission. Unlike most communications jammers, which typically rely on a pre-programmed emitter library to automatically
jam communications targets when they come up, the crewmembers on a Compass
Call aircraft are in the battlespace and can react quickly to changing situations.
If, in the middle of a mission, an enemy uses an unexpected communications system, the Compass Call crew can listen to the signal, determine if it is important
and jam it. This is why Compass Call aircraft continue to be so valuable to ground
forces, especially special operations forces.
The Air Force is tailoring its AEA inventory around global strike missions in
heavily contested electromagnetic environments. Its decision to retire half of the
Compass Call fleet should be viewed in that light. This is somewhat understandable, given today's DOD budget constraints and current national strategy.
The biggest loser in this decision is not the Air Force, however. The real impact
will be seen in the Joint AEA mission. Not long after the 9/11 attacks, Compass
Call crews deployed to Afghanistan (and later to Iraq) to provide critical support
to Army, Marine Corps and SOF personnel in ways that few Air Force leaders could
have imagined in the previous decade. As the Air Force studies future alternatives to replace the EC-130H, there is a legitimate concern that Joint AEA requirements will take a back seat to Service-centric planning. If the Compass Call fleet
is to be replaced, it is important to recognize what makes it special and to ensure
that whatever replaces these aircraft preserves those qualities. - J. Knowles

JULY 2014 * Vol. 37, No. 7

EDITORIAL STAFF
Editor: John Knowles
Managing Editor: Elaine Richardson
Senior Editor: John Haystead
Technical Editor: Ollie Holt
Contributing Writers: Dave Adamy, Barry Manz, Richard Scott,
Gábor László Zord
Marketing & Research Coordinator: Kent Agramonte
Editorial Intern: Briana Rittersporn
Proofreader: Shauna Keedian
Sales Administration: Candice Blair

EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD
Col Marshall Denney, USMC
Chief, Future Operations (J35), US Cyber Command
Mr. Dan Gobel
President, Electronic Systems, BAE Systems Inc.
Mr. Micael Johansson
Senior Vice President and Head of Business Area, Electronic Defence
Systems, Saab
Mr. Mark Kula
Vice President, Tactical Airborne Systems, Raytheon Space and
Airborne Systems
Mr. Edgar Maimon
General Manager, Elbit Systems EW and SIGINT - Elisra
CAPT Paul Overstreet
Joint Strike Fighter Weapons System Program Manager, Naval Air Systems
Command, USN
Mr. Jeffrey Palombo
Senior VP and GM, Land and Self-Protection Systems Division,
Electronic Systems, Northrop Grumman Corp.
Mr. Steve Roberts
Vice President, Strategy, Selex Galileo
Mr. Travis Slocumb
VP, Electronic Warfare Systems, Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems
Mr. Rich Sorelle
President, Electronic Systems Division, Exelis
Gp Capt P.J. Wallace
Chief of Staff, Joint Air Land Organisation, UK MOD
Dr. Richard Wittstruck
Director, System of Systems Engineering, PEO Intelligence, Electronic
Warfare and Sensors, USA

PRODUCTION STAFF
Layout & Design: Barry Senyk
Advertising Art: Elaine Connell
Contact the Editor: (978) 509-1450, JEDeditor@naylor.com
Contact the Sales Manager:
(800) 369-6220 or sales@crows.org
Subscription Information: Please contact Glorianne O'Neilin
at (703) 549-1600 or e-mail oneilin@crows.org.
The Journal of Electronic Defense
is published for the AOC by

Naylor, LLC
5950 NW 1st Place
Gainesville, FL 32607
Phone: (800) 369-6220 * Fax: (352) 331-3525
www.naylor.com
©2014 Association of Old Crows/Naylor, LLC. All rights reserved. The
contents of this publication may not be reproduced by any means, in
whole or in part, without the prior written authorization of the publisher.
Editorial: The articles and editorials appearing in this magazine do not
represent an official AOC position, except for the official notices printed
in the "Association News" section or unless specifically identified as an
AOC position.
PUBLISHED JULY 2014/JED-M0714/4051


http://www.naylor.com

JED - July 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of JED - July 2014

The View From Here
Conferences Calendar
Courses Calendar
From the President
The Monitor
Washington Report
World Report
The Art of Fusion – Ew and Radar for Fighter Aircraft
EPAWSS: F-15 Ew Upgrade Ready to Launch
Technology Survey: Airborne Ir Decoys and Dispensers
EW 101
New Products
AOC Election Guide
AOC News
Index of Advertisers
JED Quick Look
JED - July 2014 - cover1
JED - July 2014 - cover2
JED - July 2014 - 3
JED - July 2014 - 4
JED - July 2014 - 5
JED - July 2014 - The View From Here
JED - July 2014 - 7
JED - July 2014 - Conferences Calendar
JED - July 2014 - 9
JED - July 2014 - Courses Calendar
JED - July 2014 - 11
JED - July 2014 - From the President
JED - July 2014 - 13
JED - July 2014 - 14
JED - July 2014 - The Monitor
JED - July 2014 - 16
JED - July 2014 - 17
JED - July 2014 - 18
JED - July 2014 - 19
JED - July 2014 - 20
JED - July 2014 - 21
JED - July 2014 - 22
JED - July 2014 - 23
JED - July 2014 - Washington Report
JED - July 2014 - 25
JED - July 2014 - World Report
JED - July 2014 - 27
JED - July 2014 - The Art of Fusion – Ew and Radar for Fighter Aircraft
JED - July 2014 - 29
JED - July 2014 - 30
JED - July 2014 - 31
JED - July 2014 - 32
JED - July 2014 - 33
JED - July 2014 - 34
JED - July 2014 - 35
JED - July 2014 - 36
JED - July 2014 - 37
JED - July 2014 - EPAWSS: F-15 Ew Upgrade Ready to Launch
JED - July 2014 - 39
JED - July 2014 - 40
JED - July 2014 - 41
JED - July 2014 - 42
JED - July 2014 - Technology Survey: Airborne Ir Decoys and Dispensers
JED - July 2014 - 44
JED - July 2014 - 45
JED - July 2014 - 46
JED - July 2014 - 47
JED - July 2014 - 48
JED - July 2014 - 49
JED - July 2014 - EW 101
JED - July 2014 - 51
JED - July 2014 - 52
JED - July 2014 - New Products
JED - July 2014 - 54
JED - July 2014 - AOC Election Guide
JED - July 2014 - 56
JED - July 2014 - 57
JED - July 2014 - 58
JED - July 2014 - 59
JED - July 2014 - 60
JED - July 2014 - 61
JED - July 2014 - 62
JED - July 2014 - AOC News
JED - July 2014 - 64
JED - July 2014 - Index of Advertisers
JED - July 2014 - JED Quick Look
JED - July 2014 - cover3
JED - July 2014 - cover4
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