Pablo's Mission Planning Website

Home Links Tips Downloads MPSSF Tips

Greetings Mission Planners,

The men and women of NGA were recognized for their contributions to the war on terror with the receipt of the Joint Meritorious Unit Award on October 19th from General Peter Pace, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff:

Gen. Pace emphasized the many contributions of NGA. “This award reflects only a portion of all that the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency team has done, and continues to do, in the War on Terror. From support of our troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, to security for major public events in the United States, and disaster relief missions across this nation, your efforts make a real difference in keeping our nation secure, both overseas and at home. Thank you for all you do every day to make the world a safer place.”

In the wide world of Commercial Imagery, it appears that Space Imaging has protested the award of NGA's NextView contract to OrbImage.  

You may remember a few months ago when I reprinted a article on PFPS in Combat that appeared in the April 2004 issue of Flying Safety Magazine.  The crew was recently recognized by the Airlift/Tanker Association:

The association’s Gen. P.K. Carlton Award for Valor is presented annually to an individual who demonstrates courage, strength, determination, bravery and fearlessness during a combat, contingency or humanitarian mission during the previous calendar year. This year marks the first time that a group -- in this case, a crew -- has earned the award. The award is named for retired Gen. Paul K. Carlton, who commanded Military Airlift Command from 1972 to 1977.

The 2004 winner of the Gen. P.K. Carlton Award for Valor is the crew of “Harley 37,” cited for its role in safely landing a battle-damaged MC-130H loaded with special operations forces during a mission in the opening days of Operation Iraqi Freedom. During the mission, the plane took 19 hits from anti-aircraft artillery fire, ranging from 7.62 mm to 57 mm, with one shell shattering the pilot’s windscreen, and others striking the main wing spar. The plane landed with only three working engines and all 58 people on board were safely evacuated.

A new version of the FalconView Threat Database (CSDB) has been posted on the SIPRNET at http://explorer.afiwc.aia.af.smil.mil/wdbctx/csdb.  If you're planning on SIPRNET then you need to install  the update.

Mission Planning Tip: Exporting ATO/ACO Data from TaskView

Having ATO information in TaskView is useful, but sometimes you need to get that data out of TaskView and into another application.  How do you do it?  The easiest way is using the Table View discussed last week:

 

Pressing the "Open in Excel" button launches Excel (if it isn't running) and opens the ATO/ACO information in a new spreadsheet:

You'll notice the export creates two worksheets, one for the ATO and one for the ACO.  The fields displayed in the Table View are the ones exported.

The next way to export data is using TaskView's File - Export to Access Database command:

The first export requires a string of convoluted steps, but subsequent ones are easier.  When you see the "Select Data Source" window click on the "New" button:

Next select the "Microsoft Access Driver (*.mdb) as your data source:

Now you'll have to save the connection type.

You can put the "saved connection" anywhere you want.  I put the file on my desktop:

When you click "Finish" you will have created the connection that allows TaskView to export, but you haven't actually exported anything.

Now you need an empty database to export the ATO information to.  Click the "Create" button:

Assign a name for the database file you'll export the ATO into:

Once the blank file is created TaskView let's you know:

Now TaskView is setup to export the data.  When you click "OK" you'll go back to a window you saw earlier.  Since the .mdb file has been created all you need to do is click the "OK" button to export the data:

After clicking the data will be exported and you'll be asked if you want to use that file as the default:

That's a pretty painful process.  The good news is that subsequent Exports are easier as you've setup the conduit from TaskView to Access.  Unfortunately this only puts ATO information into the database tables, i.e. no Airspace information is exported:

There's one more export method that saves TaskView info as a FalconView drawing.  Turn off all drawing files in FalconView then turn on the TaskView airspace/missions you want to export: 

Notice the FalconView title bar says "TaskView".  This means that the TaskView generated overlay is the "top" overlay on the FalconView map.  Select File - Save in FalconView:

Close TaskView and the ATO/ACO information disappears.  Now reopen the drawing file:

The FalconView title bar shows the top overlay is the "aco_refueling_tracks.drw" file you just created.  This example shows exporting ACO information but you can export ATO missions as well.  Unfortunately the exported ATO depictions don't include the triangles that indicate tasked targets.

TaskView's ATO/ACO export capabilities need improvement and will be one of TaskView 4.0's  main focuses.  The goal is to enable ATO/ACO information in all PFPS applications using published "machine to machine" interfaces while TaskView continues to do the 'heavy lifting' behind the scenes.

Well that's it for TaskView 3.3.1.  Next week it's on to Vertical Obstructions and the Chart Update Manual (CHUM) process.

Paul