Skip to comments.Blimplike surveillance craft set to deploy over Maryland heighten privacy concerns
Posted on 01/22/2014 9:45:45 PM PST by Seizethecarp
The aerostats that is the term for lighter-than-air craft that are tethered to the ground are to be set aloft on Army-owned land about 45 miles northeast of Washington, near Aberdeen Proving Ground, for a three-year test slated to start in October. From a vantage of 10,000 feet, they will cast a vast radar net from Raleigh, N.C., to Boston and out to Lake Erie, with the goal of detecting cruise missiles or enemy aircraft so they could be intercepted before reaching the capital.
Defense contractor Raytheon last year touted an exercise in which it outfitted the aerostats planned for deployment in suburban Baltimore with one of the companys most powerful high-altitude surveillance systems, capable of spotting individual people and vehicles from a distance of many miles.
The Army said it has no current plans to mount such cameras or infrared sensors on the aerostats or to share information with federal, state or local law enforcement, but it declined to rule out either possibility.
The aerostats planned for Maryland will have radar capable of detecting airborne objects from up to 340 miles away and vehicles on the surface from up to 140 miles away as far south as Richmond, as far west as Cumberland, Md., and as far north as Staten Island. The Army declined to say what size vehicles can be sensed from those distances.
For the Raytheon test, the MTS-B spotted a person pretending to be a terrorist planting an improvised roadside bomb, even though the view was obscured by smoke from a nearby forest fire, according to a Raytheon news release from January 2013. Operators could see live feeds of trucks, trains and cars from dozens of miles away.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
We live in the airspace exclusion zone for the Fort Huachuca aerostat. We also have a tent over the hot tub! ;-)
“The Army said it has ‘no current plans’ to mount such cameras or infrared sensors on the aerostats or to share information with federal, state or local law enforcement, but it declined to rule out either possibility.”
Barry “has a pen and a phone...”
It’s a proven concept that, in warfare, whoever controls the airspace controls the outcome.
The government controls our domestic airspace in a way that (for now) precludes either hiding effectively, or easily fighting back.
I wonder what that means, going forward. I’m not ruling out unobvious and nonsymmetrical ways of fighting back.
Maryland ? What other nation does Maryland share a border with ?
We need these on the Southern Border between the US and Mexico.
You, my American FRiend, are the terrorist they want most to watch. ;-)
That’s why I always wave at the sky when I’m outside.
I just realized that’s the NSA’s motto.
>> I just realized thats the NSAs motto.
Simian and Garfield were ahead of their time. ;-)
Is that balloon Russian?
How well do you think that blimp would do with several large holes in it?
“...so they could be intercepted...”
With what? A sternly written letter? Some clipped-haired, mean-faced “female” TSA supervisor?