Captain Sean Kelley, USN
Nimitz Operational Intelligence Center
The Nimitz Operational Intelligence Center is the U.S. Navy’s pre-eminent Center of Excellence for operational and strategic analysis of events associated with the maritime domain. The center supports fleet commanders and national policymakers, and provides timely and relevant analysis tailored to meet customer requirements. Nimitz is one of four Centers of Excellence that are distinct commands under the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI).
The Nimitz Operational Intelligence Center conducts all-source and geospatial operations in support of Fleet and Joint warfighting operations and national decision makers’ requirements. It is the leading center for Global Maritime Intelligence Integration and Maritime Domain Awareness.
Functions, Roles & Responsibilities
Fleet Intelligence Support Department
The Fleet Intelligence Support Department (FISD) integrates geographically oriented cells (GeoCells) into the Navy’s premiere 24/7/365, all-source / geospatial intelligence watch floor, the Global Maritime Collaboration Center (GMCC). The GeoCells provide deep, penetrating foundational military intelligence analysis to operational forces, the Intelligence Community (IC), U.S. agencies, and allies on naval strategy, doctrine, capabilities, operations, and plans of potential adversaries. The GMCC provides naval, joint, and civil maritime analysis and positional data support to the Fleet, DoD, national intelligence agencies, U.S. law enforcement organizations, and other U.S. government agencies and allies. The GEOINT support element provides Fleet and Joint Commanders’ access to a cadre of highly skilled imagery analysts. The team is composed of a Sea Duty/Direct Support Element (Afloat) and a Shore Duty/Tactical Element (Shore) that maintains a continuous GEOINT Watch in support of deployed naval forces. The GEOINT mission includes indications and warning through the exploitation of imagery and Full Motion Video (FMV) obtained by national, theater, tactical, and commercial means.
Naval Warfare Department
The Naval Warfare Department (NWD) provides detailed analysis of naval warfare threats posed by foreign weapons systems and countries of interest by leveraging the tactical expertise of Fleet experienced submarine, air, surface warfare and information warfare officers, Sailors, as well as a cadre of civilians and contractors. NWD supports operational commanders, mission planners, naval warfare development centers, and the national IC with unique and penetrating analysis covering naval adversary capabilities, tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP). NWD provides this dedicated, Fleet focused support via four functionally aligned divisions – SABER (surface warfare), SPEAR (air warfare), SWORD (undersea warfare), and SPECTRUM (cyber/electronic warfare/C4ISR).
Transnational Threat Department
The Transnational Threat Department (TNT) provides Fleet and national decision makers with in-depth knowledge of the maritime domain and the unique issues associated with it. Overlaying extensive maritime industry experience with cutting-edge operational intelligence analytic capabilities, TNT analysts are the community leaders in maritime counterproliferation, global maritime environment awareness, and counternarcotics analysis. Analysis of maritime strategic trade, infrastructure, cargo, and the Arctic environment enable superior decision making by some of the most senior-level leaders in the U.S. government. Responsible for maintaining the nation’s databases on merchant shipping, TNT supports the Navy, its partners, and the entire IC on all issues related to the positional data, physical characteristics, and history of more than 100,000 merchant ships operating worldwide.
Maritime Domain Awareness and Advanced Analytics
The Integrated Maritime Domain Awareness (iMDA) element of the command includes the ONI Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA) program, Advanced Analytics (A2), and Nimitz Plans and Policy. Focusing on mitigating MDA data and capability gaps (cargo, people and vessels), the MDA program office coordinates collaboration and conducts outreach to expand and optimize MDA data sources and analysis. The team partners with other IC, interagency, international, and foreign organizations to maximize information sharing and analysis. ONI’s MDA program office also develops and provides Maritime Activity Based Intelligence (MABI) tradecraft training for fleet analysts. The team forms a “bridge” between basic intelligence “A” school tradecraft and advanced Intelligence Community tradecraft.