Air War College Air University Maxwell AFB United States
The attached visual illustrates the impressive nature of Americas 21st Century globally networked Joint Force. From bases in the United States, Airmen fly MQ-1 Predator, MQ-9 Reaper and RQ-4 Global Hawk Remotely Piloted Aircraft RPA over hostile battlefields in distant lands. The platforms collect vast quantities of information that are streamed back to Distributed Common Ground System DCGS intelligence centers located around the world. DCGS Airmen identify threats and relay vital information back to supported units on the battlefield. Viewers often reasonably conclude that this array of sensors, aircraft, communications links and intelligence centers seamlessly operate as a collective team, perhaps akin to a crew on an E-3 Airborne Warning and Control System AWACS or E-8C Joint Surveillance Attack Radar System JSTARS.