Thursday, October 23, 2014
Unmanned Systems
Documents on the Pentagon's unmanned aerial, ground and underwater systems
Inside the Pentagon - 10/23/2014

U.S. Special Operations Command intends to release a draft request for proposals this fall to help develop an unmanned, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance program, according to an Oct. 15 notice posted on the Federal Business Opportunities website.

Inside the Navy - 10/20/2014

The Littoral Combat Ship Coronado (LCS-4) recently completed dynamic interface testing with the Fire Scout unmanned aerial vehicle, which is planned to deploy as part of the LCS surface warfare and mine countermeasures mission packages, the Navy announced last week.

Inside the Air Force - 10/17/2014

The Air Force has approved a new acquisition concept for the MQ-9 Reaper that will reduce the cycle time between capability upgrades, according to the head of Air Combat Command's intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance weapons systems division.

Inside the Navy - 10/13/2014

Northrop Grumman recently demonstrated the capabilities of its Mine Hunting Unmanned surface vehicle, which is planned ultimately to deploy off of the Navy's Flight II Littoral Combat Ship, according to a company official.

Inside the Navy - 10/13/2014

The Navy successfully tested its swarmboat technology and is planning an operational demonstration of the technology within the year, which may be used in the future to escort billion-dollar ships, defend people, ports, waterways and commerce, according to a service official.

Inside the Army - 10/13/2014

Electronic warfare systems used to combat improvised explosive devices in Iraq and Afghanistan are among the capabilities eyed by the Army for taking down unmanned aircraft systems, according to a service official.

Inside the Army - 10/13/2014

The Army hopes to acquire an unmanned surveillance aircraft that can fly for up to eight hours at upwards of 16,000 feet, according to a request for information posted to the Federal Business Opportunities website.

Inside the Air Force - 10/10/2014

Air Combat Command has commissioned a study to determine what type of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft the Air Force will need 10 to 15 years from now, and the prevailing view is the new aircraft will be multirole, having both surveillance and strike capabilities.

Inside the Air Force - 10/10/2014

Air Combat Command appears ready to support Northrop Grumman's universal payload adapter solution for transferring sensors from the U-2 to the RQ-4B Global Hawk once it is determined which sensors would be most appropriate to carry on the high-altitude unmanned surveillance aircraft.

Inside the Air Force - 10/10/2014

Air Education and Training Command has signaled interest in potentially transitioning its undergraduate remotely piloted aircraft training syllabus from the T-6 flight simulator to a "universal RPA simulator."

Inside the Navy - 10/06/2014

The Navy last week awarded Textron Systems a contract to develop an unmanned mine-hunting system that will equip the service's Littoral Combat Ship.

Inside the Navy - 10/06/2014

General Dynamics Land Systems recently showcased its unmanned ground vehicle at an annual Marine Corps conference as a solution to reduce the logistics burden on the force.

Inside the Air Force - 10/03/2014

Operational testing of the RQ-4B Global Hawk Block 40 system has been pushed back to the third quarter of fiscal year 2015 because of test resource availability and difficulties integrating the remotely piloted aircraft's synthetic aperture radar with the Air Force's back-end processing, exploitation and dissemination network, the service has confirmed.

Inside the Air Force - 10/03/2014

The Air Force wants to catch up on a number Global Hawk air vehicle modifications including adverse weather upgrades, now that it has decided to continue operating the aircraft.

Inside the Air Force - 10/03/2014

Northrop Grumman has expressed confidence in its ability to re-host the U-2 spy plane's sensors on the remotely piloted Global Hawk after providing the Air Force with the initial results of a feasibility study.

Inside the Air Force - 10/03/2014

More than five months after the Air Force descoped its MQ-9 Reaper procurement strategy, the Defense Department Inspector General released publicly the summary of an audit that criticizes the service's previous plan and encourages it to re-evaluate its strategy.

Inside the Pentagon - 10/02/2014

NASA is seeking industry's help on researching and developing autonomous technology for small unmanned drones in the first of what could be a series of requests to help integrate unmanned aircraft into the national airspace, according to a new request for information.

DefenseAlert - 09/30/2014

Global Hawk prime contractor Northrop Grumman has provided the Air Force with the initial results of a congressionally mandated study that looks at options for employing U-2 spy plane sensor payloads on the remotely piloted RQ-4B Global Hawk.

DefenseAlert - 09/26/2014

The Defense Department has necked down a five-way competition to develop a new medium-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aircraft capable of being launched and recovered from small ships, awarding Northrop Grumman and AeroVironment contracts to mature technology and conduct preliminary design for their respective Tactically Exploited Reconnaissance Node (TERN) UAV concepts.

Inside the Air Force - 09/26/2014

After saving the program from termination this month, the Air Force is working to validate the capabilities of its long-endurance Orion unmanned aerial system with a series of flight tests extending into fiscal year 2015.

DefenseAlert - 09/24/2014

NAVAL AIR STATION PATUXENT RIVER, MD -- The Navy expects to drop its total buy of Triton MQ-4C air vehicles below the 68 it had planned for because the system is "more reliable" than anticipated and fewer aircraft are expected to be lost to attrition, according to a service official.

DefenseAlert - 09/23/2014

NAVAL AIR STATION PATUXENT RIVER, MD -- The fate of the Navy's Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Surveillance Strike aircraft will be determined in mid-October, according to a service official.

DefenseAlert - 09/23/2014

Air Combat Command has re-framed the debate over what type of environment its next-generation intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft will be designed for.

Inside the Air Force - 09/19/2014

The head of the Air Force's international affairs office has renewed calls for a government policy on the export of remotely piloted aircraft, saying the transfer of those types of unmanned aircraft to coalition partners remains her No. 1 priority as a way of bolstering intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capacity.

Inside the Air Force - 09/19/2014

The Air Force's remotely piloted aircraft capabilities division is developing a long-term strategy to guide the development of small unmanned aircraft systems and the team is looking to academia and industry for input, according to the head of that office.

DefenseAlert - 09/16/2014

The Air Force's remotely piloted aircraft capabilities division is developing a long-term strategy to guide the development of small unmanned aircraft systems and the team is looking to academia and industry for input, according to the head of that office.

Inside the Army - 09/15/2014

The Army has tapped Carnegie Robotics for the engineering and manufacturing development phase of the Autonomous Mine Detection System, the service announced Sept. 8.

Inside the Air Force - 09/12/2014

As the Air Force prepares for the eventual retirement of the legacy MQ-1 Predator aircraft, plans are firming on what to do with those airframes once they are removed from operation.

Inside the Air Force - 09/12/2014

The Air Force wants to save its long-endurance Orion Remotely Piloted Aircraft program from termination following a successful series of flight tests that concluded in August.

DefenseAlert - 09/09/2014

The Air Force's original unmanned hunter-killer aircraft, the MQ-1 Predator, will probably remain in service until around fiscal year 2019 because the service does not have the capacity to pull aircrews away from their current combat duties for retraining on the newer MQ-9 Reaper system.

DefenseAlert - 09/09/2014

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency last week briefed an array of engineers and designers who are eying participation in the agency's new Ground X-Vehicle Technology program, which is intended to explore a variety of approaches, including autonomous technology, to decrease combat vehicle weight.

Inside the Navy - 09/08/2014

A high-level assessment of the Navy's Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike aircraft has been delayed because of future budget uncertainty and affordability concerns, the Pentagon's acquisition chief said last week.

Inside the Air Force - 09/05/2014

The Air Force Scientific Advisory Board has been directed to examine the way forward for remotely piloted aircraft as the service looks beyond current operating environments to more heavily defended airspace.

Inside the Air Force - 09/05/2014

The government has no near-term plans to push military-grade unmanned aerial vehicles off the Missile Technology Control Regime's Category I control list, despite calls from the defense industry and the Pentagon's international affairs community to consider changes.

Inside the Army - 09/01/2014

The Army has awarded ImSAR LLC a $98.9 million contract to research, develop and integrate small aperture radars on small unmanned aerial systems, according to a notice posted to the Defense Department's website.

Inside the Navy - 09/01/2014

The Navy last week issued a request for proposals for its remote multimission vehicle, a crucial component to the mine reconnaissance system designed for integration onto the service's Littoral Combat Ship.

Inside the Air Force - 08/29/2014

As Boeing prepares to begin modifications to its first low-rate initial production lot of QF-16 target drones, the company is working to complete operational testing in anticipation of a full-rate production contract award from the Air Force early next year.

Inside the Pentagon - 08/28/2014

The Naval Air Systems Command seeks industry's help to find solutions for small, vertical-take-off-and-landing unmanned aircraft systems that can be fielded immediately.

Inside the Navy - 08/25/2014

NAVAL STATION NORFOLK, VA -- The Defense Acquisition Board will meet to discuss the Navy's latest plans for its Unmanned Carrier-Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike aircraft on Sept. 10, a service official told reporters last week, and a final request for proposals from industry will go out soon afterward, in early September.

Inside the Air Force - 08/22/2014

Northrop Grumman executives say a recent $241 million contract for three unmanned RQ-4B aircraft will preserve the Global Hawk production line until the Navy ramps up procurement of its maritime derivative, the MQ-4C Triton.

Inside the Pentagon - 08/21/2014

As part of its ongoing effort to integrate unmanned drones into the national airspace, the Pentagon is conducting a second round of field tests with an eye toward developing operating procedures for unmanned aircraft systems, according to a recent report Defense Department acquisition chief Frank Kendall sent to lawmakers.

DefenseAlert - 08/18/2014

The Air Force has put Northrop Grumman on contract for one final order of remotely piloted RQ-4B aircraft, bringing the service a step closer to satisfying its total requirement and ending Global Hawk production.

DefenseAlert - 08/18/2014

Lockheed Martin is touting its simulation of a fully autonomous mission using an unmanned helicopter and unmanned ground vehicle.

DefenseAlert - 08/17/2014

ABOARD THE USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT (CVN-71) -- The Navy on Sunday held its first demonstration of carrier-based integrated flight operations involving manned and unmanned aircraft, with the X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System-Demonstrator's most recent detachment aboard the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt.

Inside the Army - 08/18/2014

The Army's acquisition executive laid out plans for a key robotics platform last week, telling industry officials that the system will feature an open architecture and a common chassis that can support multiple mission payloads.

Inside the Army - 08/18/2014

As it develops its unmanned vehicle platforms, the Army is moving toward more open interface standards that will improve communication between subsystems and allow larger vehicles to be used as unmanned platforms, according to an Army official.

Inside the Army - 08/11/2014

The Army has cited cyber, material sciences and robotics -- including manned and unmanned air/ground teaming -- among its top priorities in its newly established "Force 2025 and Beyond" directorate, according to a service overview and memo on the directorate released last week.

Inside the Navy - 08/11/2014

Naval Air Systems Command is looking to repair the K-MAX cargo unmanned aerial system that was damaged in Afghanistan before it is put into storage, according to a service spokeswoman.

Inside the Navy - 08/11/2014

Shipboard testing for the Marine Corps' RQ-21A Blackjack unmanned aerial system is delayed because of ship availability, according to a Naval Air Systems Command spokeswoman.

DefenseAlert - 08/08/2014

Naval Air Systems Command is looking to repair the K-MAX cargo unmanned aerial system that was damaged in Afghanistan before it is put into storage, according to a service spokeswoman.