Breedlove Sheds Light on Gorgon Stare

The performance “troubles” with the Air Force’s new Gorgon Stare sensor system “are very close” to being fixed or “fixed now,” Gen. Philip Breedlove, USAF’s vice chief of staff, said Wednesday. “The program is, quite frankly, performing better. And we expect and hope to field it soon, early in the summer, maybe,” he said in testimony before the House Armed Services Committee. Gorgon Stare is a podded system carrying sophisticated cameras; MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft will carry it to provide wide-area overhead surveillance in support of ground troops. A leaked Air Force document surfaced this week highlighting performance shortcomings with Gorgon Stare during operational testing last fall. In fact, the testers did not endorse fielding it without improvements. Breedlove explained that Gorgon Stare “was having some trouble” early in its development, as the leaked document indicated, “because it was a pretty good leap forward in technology.”