Archive for August 18, 2011
Linking Manned and Unmanned Aircraft
The U.S. Army is getting ready to test a concept that would link unmanned aircraft like the MQ-1C Gray Eagle with manned aircraft like the AH-64D Apache helicopter.
Known as MUSIC — for Manned Unmanned Systems Integration Capability — the idea will be tested next month at the Army’s Dugway Proving Ground in Utah, an Army leader told an unmanned systems conference in Washington Aug. 17. MUSIC calls for linking unmanned aircraft, manned helicopters and a ground control station known as the Universal Ground Control Station (UGCS) to communicate with one another, said Lt. Col. James Kennedy, the Army’s product manager for Common System Integration. The Gray Eagle as well as the RQ-7 Shadow unmanned aerial system and the MQ-5 Hunter UAS will demonstrate interoperabilityby operating off a UCGS through common hardware and software functionality.
Another ground control technology — the One System Remote Video Terminal (OSRVT) — will control the payloads of three unmanned aircraft, Shadow, Gray Eagle, and Hunter via TCDL (the Efficient Digital Data Link). And the OSRVT will receive the video from the Raven and Puma small UAS via the Digital Data Link (DDL).
The Apache helicopter will demonstrate advancements in interoperability by controlling the Gray Eagle and transmitting video to the ground station via the TCDL.The Army also plans to use the Kiowa helo to demonstrate video and metadata transmission to the OSRVT (ground station) .
Kennedy spoke at the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International 2011 Expo. The gathering ends Friday (Aug. 19).