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Unmanned Systems

September 02, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The Navy must make a "lot of progress" in the development of unmanned systems over the next year or two as the service seeks to field an ambitious array of new unmanned aerial platforms that can perform a wide variety of jobs, Vice Adm. David Architzel, head of Naval Air Systems Command, told Inside the Navy.
September 02, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The Navy will release a request for proposals in fiscal year 2012 and hold an industry day later this year for the unmanned influence sweep system, an integral part of the Littoral Combat Ship mine countermeasures mission package, the program manager for Navy unmanned systems said recently.
September 02, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The U.S. and Australian armed forces tested an array of nascent naval technologies during the annual "Talisman Sabre" exercise that wrapped up recently, experimenting with everything from lightweight unmanned underwater vehicles to water filtration systems.
September 01, 2011 | Inside the Pentagon

The Navy and Army have issued acquisition decision memorandums supporting a joint effort to modularize ground stations that control unmanned drones -- a key step toward implementing the architecture in development.

September 01, 2011 | Inside the Pentagon

The Pentagon is seeking industry's input on how to help unmanned drones sense and avoid nearby objects, a major hurdle that must be overcome before the drones can be integrated into U.S. skies.

August 26, 2011 | Inside the Army

An unmanned
helicopter featuring a new ground imaging system won't be used in Afghanistan
until next year due to technical issues, Army spokeswoman Sofia Bledsoe said on
August 20.

August 26, 2011 | Inside the Army

An urgent
request to procure 180 Puma unmanned aircraft systems for operations in
Afghanistan in July generated a $65.5 million order for Puma's California-based
creator AeroVironment, the company's largest-ever order.

August 26, 2011 | Inside the Navy
Northrop Grumman currently operates deployed MQ-8B Fire Scout unmanned aerial systems, but the Navy plans to gradually transition to a more government-operated system, Capt. Patrick Smith, Fire Scout program manager, told reporters recently.
August 26, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The Navy has simulated the Unmanned Combat Air System demonstrator aircraft in seas as rough as sea state five -- characterized as rough seas with waves as high as 13 feet -- but the program is unlikely to actually test the air vehicle in those conditions, Capt. Jaime Engdahl, UCAS program manager, said recently.
August 26, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The Navy plans to deploy the Lockheed Martin/Kaman K-MAX unmanned air system to ferry cargo in Afghanistan in support of the Marine Corps, Rear Adm. William Shannon, the Navy's program executive officer for unmanned aviation and strike weapons, said during a recent industry conference panel session.
August 25, 2011 | Inside the Pentagon

The Pentagon is planning a second round of demonstrations as part of its efforts to modularize the ground stations that control unmanned drones.

August 19, 2011 | Inside the Army

The Army will
spend $73 million to urgently procure 180 Puma unmanned aircraft systems for
operations in Afghanistan, according to a rapid-acquisition authority
memorandum signed by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.

August 19, 2011 | Inside the Army

As many as
five contractors that responded to the Army's request for information on a new
fleet of unmanned helicopters are interested in designing viable platforms for
the aircraft, said Tim Owings, acting project manager for Army unmanned
aircraft systems.

August 19, 2011 | Inside the Navy
A recent Department of Operational Test and Evaluation report that said the MQ-8B Fire Scout was successful on only about half its missions earlier this year aboard the frigate Halyburton (FFG-40) was overly strict on what constituted a successful mission, Rear Adm. William Shannon, program executive officer for unmanned aviation and strike weapons, said last week.
August 19, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The Increment 3 version of the Broad Area Maritime Surveillance unmanned aerial system will help fill the spy plane role as EP-3s begin to leave the service later this decade and as the Navy determines what the next-generation EPX concept will look like, BAMS program manager Capt. James Hoke told reporters last week.
August 19, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The Fire Scout that was downed in Libya by enemy fire in June was intentionally sent into a hostile environment, MQ-8B program manager Capt. Patrick Smith told reporters Aug. 17 at a symposium in Washington hosted by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International. Operators had a positive data link with the aircraft and positive indications of the air vehicle on radar at the time it was lost, which the Navy later confirmed was due to enemy fire. "It was tasked and directed into an area where there was active engagement of aircraft," Smith said. "Flying a helicopter below a cloud deck in an area where there's anti-aircraft capabilities -- it's high risk."
August 19, 2011 | Inside the Navy
Unmanned systems must become easier to operate, Rear Adm. William Shannon, the Navy's program executive officer for unmanned aviation and strike weapons, said during a panel session last week held during an industry conference.
August 19, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The future of unmanned systems and their developing survivability will hinge on how they adapt in different environments, the director for the office of innovation at the Office of Naval Research told reporters this week.
August 19, 2011 | Inside the Navy
Export restrictions may hinder the United States' leading position in unmanned systems on the world stage, Wes Bush, Northrop Grumman's chairman, chief executive officer and president, told reporters this week.
August 19, 2011 | Inside the Navy
Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead said last week he sees great potential for using unmanned systems to provide a persistent sensor in the harsh climate of the arctic as climate change opens sea lanes in the "fifth ocean."

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