Coming Soon to a Theater Near You: Gorgon Stare Increment 2

The Air Force is getting ready to field the second iteration of the Gorgon Stare wide-area overhead surveillance sensor, said Lt. Gen. Larry James, the Air Force’s ISR chief. MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft carry the podded ISR system. Increment 1 has been “very successful in Afghanistan,” said James in his Nov. 16 address at AFA’s Global Warfare Symposium in Los Angeles. It is “very much in high demand” by ground troops with its ability to surveil a swath of land 4 kilometers by 4 km at once, he noted. “You can look at essentially an entire village or a small town,” said James. Increment 2 builds upon these features by being able to cover a piece of land 10 km by 10 km, he said. Gorgon Stare imagery is not exactly the same thing” as high-definition, full-motion video due to the “lesser frame rate” of the sensor’s cameras, said James. However, “it does give you that wide-area access and it is very effective at what it does,” he said. (For more coverage of James’ speech, read ISR in an Anti-Access World.) (See also Global Stare.)