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optronics (1)

Over the last few years there has been an ever increasing proliferation of Electro-Optical and Infrared camera systems on many air (and land and sea) platforms. More and more companies are producing turrets that offer varying processing techniques that can enhance picture quality in order to deliver better detection opportunitites to a wide variety of agencies. But, like personal computers, I wonder how how much of the processing power is being exploited to it's full potential.
Having worked with people in the past who were more than willing to test systems to the point of destruction I have also seen the flip-side where operators have worked on sytems years and are happy to work with the picture that is immediately presented to them. More than once I've heard "I didn't know that function existed" or "I didn't want to try that because I didn't know what it would do".
Allied with the operating complexities are the interpretting issues. It's probably impossible to gauge how many things have been missed by an operator because they didn't notice a particular phenomena or anomoly. Operators don't know what they don't know.
As budgets get tighter, on-the-job experience will be harder and harder to gain. Classroom and synthetic training will need to be employed to a greater extent in order to maximise the output from complex systems. Anecdotally ASG Sensor Academy have heard that, to a greater or lesser extent, sensor manufacturers are often happy to make a sale yet offer very little training the "how to". The issue is further compounded by training regularly receiving minimal funding, and often overlooked altogether.
And why would an agency want to spend any money on training on a camera's just like watching TV, right?

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