ERDAS IMAGINE software received the highest overall rating among 40 tools evaluated by the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) Pathfinder program during the Functional Crosswalk phase of Pathfinder 2003 Geospatial Intelligence Tools for the Distributed Common Ground System (GIT/DCGS) assessment. The software also received ratings in the highest range for every functional subcategory evaluated during the Technical Crosswalk phase. In fact, of the 17 competing vendor solutions, ERDAS IMAGINE was one of only four solutions to earn across-the-board “Favorable” ratings for technical performance.
The Pathfinder 2003 assessment was conducted between December 2001 and November 2002 for NIMA’s Distributed Common Ground System-Imagery (DCGS-I) Integrated Product Team (IPT). DCGS is a U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) family of systems that provides multi-intelligence (multi-INT) Tasking, Processing, Exploitation and Dissemination (TPED) to the Joint Task Force (JTF) and below through a combination of forward support, collaboration, and reach back.
For Pathfinder 2003, DCGS Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) conducted a comprehensive evaluation of commercial and non-developmental geospatial and imagery analysis tools that have potential application for the exploitation of imagery and other intelligence sources within DCGS’ tactical and near real-time scenarios. The assessment focused on low to high-end tools, both commercial off the shelf (COTS) and government off the shelf (GOTS), to assist in the exploitation of spectral, signal, and geospatial intelligence data in support of battlefield awareness and targeting. The objective was to find tools that would enable NIMA and its customers to quickly and accurately extract and depict the necessary information from a specified collection medium.
Competing against 16 other vendor solutions during the Technical Crosswalk phase of the evaluation, ERDAS IMAGINE V8.5 received high scores in nine of eleven functional and usability categories evaluated (see below), covering all steps involved in the technical performance for geospatial imaging process and usability.
- Obtain Reference and Support Data
- Import, Process and Display
- Exploitation – Detection
- Exploitation – Analysis
- Exploitation – Fusion
- Conduct Closure Activities
- User Control
- Workload Reasonableness
"The proven result of the Pathfinder Program is the discovery of new and better technology as smaller firms are given the equal opportunity to showcase their products to NIMA and other Department of Defense organizations in a realistic, applicable setting,” comments Kurt Schwoppe, Leica Geosystems Defense Solutions.
The Pathfinder program provides a critical link between commercial and government developers of technologies and the users of those technologies. Specifically, Pathfinder conducts market surveillance and market investigation, and identifies and evaluates key technologies to improve the analysis and user processes in the areas of imagery and geospatial information production.