Dr. J. Richard Fisher

Dr. J. Richard Fisher has held key executive positions with USASDC since 1971 and was a charter member of the Senior Executive Service (SES). In the 1970s as Director of Technology Analysis, Fisher initiated the research in nonnuclear strategic defense concepts which operate outside the earth’s atmosphere using ground based, ABM Treaty-compliant components. One of these efforts laid the foundation for the 1984 Homing Overlay Experiment (HOE), which produced the first major accomplishment for the SDI. The HOE vehicle intercepted and destroyed a mock Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) reentry vehicle more than 100 nautical miles above the Pacific. The Exoatmospheric Reentry–vehicle Interceptor Subsystem (ERIS) further extended and refined the foundation laid by HOE for a nonnuclear, ground-based, long range interceptor. Lessons learned from HOE led to the selection of ERIS as one of the six SDI technologies to be advanced to Milestone One – Demonstration/Validation – in the major system acquisition process.

Another effort under his leadership, the Forward Acquisition Sensor (FAS), made major advances in the state-of-the-art for long wavelength infrared sensors. FAS provided the basis for the command’s Ground-based Surveillance and Tracking System (GSTS), an optical sensor rocket-launched from the ground into space on a suborbital trajectory, which was also advanced to Milestone One.