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TOPIC: Situational awareness ....

Situational awareness .... 10 months 3 days ago #411

It is sometimes very difficult to locate the police forces on the ground when you have pinpointed your target with the FLIR in the woods .... How do you "see" your ground forces to talk them to your target ? We do not have NVG's , the only thing we have is the FLIR , but that FLIR is in Narrow FOV and I can not zoom out because than there is the risk to loose the target ...3 men's crew , One TFO on the camera , One TFO on the radio with only his moving map and his FLIR image on a screen ... One pilot that is trying to orbit around target , which he can't see.....
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Situational awareness .... 9 months 3 weeks ago #413

It really comes down to equipment. If you had a IR laser, you could lase the target for ground units with night vision. If you had a newer camera system, you could drop a marker on the heat source and then come back to it. If you had a light that was slaved to the camera, you could light it up to direct the ground units in.

I assume you don't have this equipment, but you do have a advantage with a three man crew. I would increase altitude and widen out the camera as far as it goes. I would purchase some type of non ANVIS NVG for the radio TFO to get ground units as close as he can and the camera operator could direct from there. You may lose the heat source, but you should at least be able to get a K9 in the area to finish the search.
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Situational awareness .... 9 months 3 weeks ago #414

  • Lane Trim
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Let me start by sharing what I have seen work, but first directing in ground units to a target when it is pitch black out, is no easy task. It takes alot of practice and even then it is a challenge every time. I second all that Ryan has said.

To assist we use an IR camera with the Churchill mapping system. When we have a target hunkered down it is as simple as touching the screen to create a way point at the targets location. From there I would be comfortable in leaving the target (for a short while) and moving my camera over or pan out to see where the ground crews are. I provide quick updates for them and then I would then quickly go back to the target and reestablish my eye by just going back to the way point. I would then keep it going back and forth between the target and ground units so I could continue to update their direction until they got close enough to be within the field of view in the camera.

Going "eyes out" works if your ground units are comfortable with using their flash lights to point them up at you or flashing them around. It is easy to see and helps keep them in their your periphery when you are focused on a target. The only downfall is that units give up their location to the bad guy. However, once they get close to a target or within range of their own flashlights we train for them to start giving commands from a safe distance, avoiding any sudden attacks or ambushes from the offender against our members. Reality is tho our members close that distance very quickly once they know where the offender is, making it a crucial time for a TFO to focus on the target to know if hands are empty or not. If the offender ignores commands then we use the K9 on a long line to locate.

From 1000 ft the NVG on 'eyes out" is only going to give you a small advantage as it is still hard to clearly see what is on the ground due to no magnification capabilities of the NVG. The camera is still the best tool for that. Only our SWAT/TAC teams have NVG capabilities so our Laser illuminator is only helpful to our pilot and tfo to keep situational awareness to what the camera is looking at. So a laser may not add to your advantage either. I have had times tho when the laser was illuminating down into tall grass and the TAC team on NVG could not see the laser due to it penetrating to the ground and not much of the grass.

Sometimes I use a spot light and just light up the suspect. Our hope is to blind them with intense amounts of light to make it difficult for the suspect to see approaching members. If the suspect flees then I can continue to follow with the light or shut it off taking the suspects ability to see away as well. The feedback from our members has been positive with this as the members can see the beam and get a good instant idea as to the location of the offender without me having to voice any direction over the air. Our search light is capable of being slaved to our IR camera so both IR camera and the light can be pointed at the same thing.

Recently we just upgraded our search light with the option for an IR filter. This is incredibly useful with NVG's on the ground because you can have the light on and see it with NVG but with the naked eye you would see nothing and most importantly the bad guys would also see nothing. This is still new to us and we are still figuring out more ways to use the IR light.

I hope those examples made sense but if you need anymore help please do not hesitate to ask This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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Situational awareness .... 9 months 2 days ago #424

  • Harald J Brink
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