Edward B. Tomme


Tomme, Edward B. [LTCOL/USAF (Ret.)] "Emphasizing Effect over Domain: Merging Three Organizations to Enhance the Efficacy of Our Nation's Intelligence Production." Air & Space Power Journal 23, no. 1 (Spring 2009). [http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil]

"An AFSPC [Air Force Space Command] combined with appropriate elements from the new Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Agency (AFISRA), much of the operational structure of the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), and all support functions working in cyberspace would become the cornerstone of a new combat support command that would enable a single commander to support joint Department of Defense (DOD) operations and the intelligence community more effectively than is possible under the current structure."


Tomme, Edward B. [LTCOL/USAF (Ret.)] "The Myth of the Tactical Satellite." Air & Space Power Journal 20, no. 2 (Summer 2006). [http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil]

"A combination of physical constraints placed on satellites by orbital mechanics and operational requirements placed on their payloads by the missions that can be performed from space prevents all but the most rudimentary tactical missions from being attainable for the foreseeable future. Even if these missions can be performed from space, they will end up costing hundreds of thousands to several million dollars per hour overhead.... Continued funding of the tactical satellite program under the misguided notion that such satellites can provide tactical effects on the ground only serves to drain scarce budgetary resources from other programs that can provide the desired effects."

Guerriero, A&SPJ 21.2 (Summer 2007), suggests that "[w]e should not dismiss the value of tactical satellites. They can fill an important role as complements to other existing constellations and assets while providing a level of responsiveness to theater commanders not available from strategic systems."

Tomme, A&SPJ 21.2 (Summer 2007), responds that "we must definitely look to space when it offers the most effective way to accomplish the mission. Without a doubt, a mission requiring global coverage or even overflight of denied territory beyond the range of airborne or near-space sensors plays to the strength of space.... However..., given the existence of so many more effective ways to support our tactical warriors..., it appears that promoting the theory of 'space because we can' is an unaffordable, unresponsive, ineffective, and ill-advised course of action."


Tomme, Ed ("Mel") [LTCOL/USAF], and Sigfred ("Ziggy") Dahl [COL/USAF]. "Balloons in Today’s Military? An Introduction to the Near-Space Concept." Air & Space Power Journal 19, no. 4 (Winter 2005). [http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/apj/apj05/win05/tomme.html]

The U.S. military is considering the use of helium-filled balloons to augment its intelligence-gathering and communications infrastructures. "The near-space concept ... involves floating payloads into a region of the stratosphere where winds are light and weather virtually nonexistent. From that extremely high vantage point, the payloads have line of sight for hundreds of miles to the horizon, becoming long-range communications relays or providing intelligence over theater-sized areas." This article shows "why the near-space concept can become a valuable layer" in America's C4ISR systems, "with strengths that the other layers do not or cannot provide."


Return to Tj-Ton