Capt. Ruben Kafenbaum, Arizona Wing director of information technology, tests the GIIEP equipment before takeoff.
Maj. Robert Becker and 1st Lt. Chris Dusard (right) discuss the training syllabus for the GIIEP course as Sgt. John Horne (foreground) participates in the training. Becker, a member of CAP’s national training staff, led the GIEEP training, coordinated by Dusard, emergency services officer for Deer Valley Composite Squadron 32. Horne is the Sky Harbor Composite Squadron’s public affairs officer.
Dusard (left) and Maj. Bruce Baker, communications officer for William Rogers Memorial Senior Squadron 104, participate in a classroom session.
Becker leads a classroom session.
The Deer Valley squadron’s assistant emergency services officer, 2nd Lt. Kevin Corson, works on his classroom assignment.
Photos by Capt. Jerad Hoff
Capt. Jerad Hoff
Information Technology Officer
Deer Valley Composite Squadron 302
ARIZONA – The opportunity to experiment with high-tech tools was one of the reasons 1st Lt. Chris Dusard chose to join Civil Air Patrol, so he was in his element the weekend of Sept. 8 as he coordinated 12 Arizona Wing members’ training on one of CAP’s latest advanced technological tools -- the Geospatial Information Interoperability Exploitation – Portable system, better known as “GIIEP.”
The GIIEP system expands the organization’s aerial photo-reconnaissance abilities to offer live video streaming from CAP aircraft over Federal Communications Commission-authorized cellular internet connection to decision makers on the ground. In Arizona, after some further testing in the state’s Personal Communications Services environment, the wing has targeted operational capability for December.
The Arizona National Guard has loaned one GIIEP unit to the wing, leaving it in the unusual position of not having to request the equipment from CAP National Headquarters. If needed, additional units can be brought in from headquarters to augment the two units available in Arizona.
Dusard, emergency services officer for Deer Valley Composite Squadron 302, worked to coordinate aircraft and pilots to ensure that participants had time in the air with the equipment.
The 12-member training session was thorough, with Maj. Robert Becker, the Illinois Wing’s director of communications and a member of CAP’s national training staff, leading the classroom sessions. Each participant received hands-on experience with the equipment, both in class and on training flights.
As required by the National Guard Bureau, each participant became a certified GIIEP operator by passing a written test at the training’s conclusion.