USAF Airlift Into the Heart of Darkness, the Congo 1960-1978: Implications for Modern Air Mobility Planners, Ian Gilbert, 9781288306800


As recently as September 2007, Deputy Secretary of Defense Gordon England directed the establishment of a task force to coordinate unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) issues and determine a way ahead to provide for “common, joint, and operationally effective UAS programs.”1 Aren’t the systems we have now common, joint, and operationally effective? Why the need for a task force and why did he mention specific areas to address including streamlining acquisition and management, interoperability, integration of UAS into civil airspace, frequency spectrum and bandwidth use, and payload and sensor management?2 The answers are not easy ones, but mainly concern the issue of increasing demand for these systems and their products, and the current existing challenges. The communications area of frequency and bandwidth availability is one case where these challenges will continue to increase as demand increases.

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