Defense

March 4, 2013

Gray Eagle completes initial operational testing, evaluation

Tags:
Kris Osborn
Army News

The U.S. Army’s Gray Eagle unmanned aircraft system recently completed a successful initial operating test & evaluation at the Army’s National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif.

The U.S. Army’s Gray Eagle unmanned aircraft system recently completed a successful initial operational testing and evaluation at the Army’s National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif.

During the initial operational testing and evaluation, or IOT&E, the Gray Eagle platform was operated from Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., and employed in an operational and realistic way in support of a brigade combat team rotation at NTC, explained John Moltenberry, military test plans analyst, U.S. Army Operational Test Command, Army Test and Evaluation Command.

The basic thrust of the IOT&E is to assess the degree to which a given platform or technology meets its designated requirements, typically as a way to inform anticipated full-rate production decisions, he said.
“We collect data and provide data to the evaluators. The evaluator then does his analysis based on that data. The idea is to exercise the system against a specified set of requirements such as day and night operations, operational tempo, maintenance man hours and mission load — essentially assessing the types of missions the Gray Eagle would be most likely to perform,” Moltenberry added. “Some of the requirements might be the ability to remain on station for a given number of hours or demonstrate an ability to acquire and engage a target.”

Operators can control the Gray Eagle through the use of satellite communications – which allow for “beyond-line-of-sight” missions – or through tactical common data link line-of-sight signals, Moltenberry explained.

Timothy Baxter, the project manager for unmanned aircraft system, UAS, said the IOT&E verified that the Gray Eagle platform was effective, operationally suitable and meeting survivability and force protection key performance parameters. He also added that the beyond low-rate-initial-production report included a handful of worthwhile recommendations.

“The recommendations are associated with improving tactics, techniques and procedures, improving doctrine with respect to UAS, and then next-war preparation,” Baxter said.

Baxter explained next-war preparation in terms of examining the implications regarding what the much-discussed Air-Sea Battle concept might mean for UAS development and deployment.

Among other things, he said, Air-Sea Battle-type deployments might require UAS to operate against hybrid or “near-peer” threats as opposed to performing primarily counter-insurgency operations.

“We’ll be returning to mobile operations because we have been kind of forward operating base-centric over the last 10 years or so,” he said. “An expeditionary and mobile operations mindset will be our focus as we develop a five-year plan for product improvements across the board.”

Among the tactics, techniques and procedures, known as TTPs, being refined is something called manned/unmanned teaming, a technology wherein manned aviation platforms such as helicopters can share information, data and full-motion video in real time with nearby UAS; explained Baxter and Richard Kretzschmar, the Army’s deputy project manager for unmanned aerial systems.

The recent Gray Eagle IOT&E afforded the technology an occasion to demonstrate, test and utilize this latest iteration of the technology.

“We are maturing the manned/unmanned teaming capabilities associated with the Gray Eagle,” said Baxter.
“We’re not resting on our laurels and have a robust interoperability profiles. As we learn more about these TTPs and how we want to fight, we can be more efficient,” said Kretzschmar.

The IOT&E also further established and refined standardized procedures and protocols for what’s called the one system remote video terminal, or OSRVT. The terminal is a small, mobile technology that displays real-time full-motion video to warfighters, said Lt. Col. James Kennedy, the product manager for common systems integration.

In total, the OSRVTs are designed to work in tandem with the UAS system and its sensors to provide the warfighter with substantially enhanced capability in combat. The sensors on the Gray Eagle, for instance, can be of greater value and relevance to Soldiers when they are increasingly able to be viewed in a wide range of scenarios, Baxter and Kennedy said.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines August 28, 2014

News: After F-15 jet crash in Virginia, rescue helicopters search for pilot - Helicopters are searching for an Air National Guard pilot after his F-15 jet crashed in the mountains of Virginia this morning, military officials said.   Business: U.S. Air Force 3DELRR contract expected soon - The U.S. Air Force could award the contract for its...
 
 

News Briefs August 28, 2014

Russian directing new offensive in Ukraine The Obama administration believes Russia is leading a new military counteroffensive in Ukraine. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki says Russia has sent additional columns of tanks and armored vehicles into its neighbor’s territory. She says the incursions suggest a ìRussian-directed counteroffensive is likely underway in the contested e...
 
 
LM-C5

Double Deuce

A U.S. Air Force crew ferried the 22nd C-5M Super Galaxy from the Lockheed Martin facilities in Marietta, Ga., Aug. 25. Aircraft 86-0011 was ferried by a crew led by Maj. Gen. Dwyer L. Dennis, Director, Global Reach Programs, O...
 

 
Northrop Grumman photograph

First ever RQ-4 Global Hawk hits 100th flight on NASA mission

Northrop Grumman photograph A historical look at the first Global Hawk (AV1) during its maiden flight over Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., on Feb. 28, 1998. AV1 has made history again with its 100th flight in support of NASA en...
 
 

Northrop Grumman’s CIRCM system completes U.S. Army flight testing

Northrop Grumman’s Common Infrared Countermeasures system recently completed another round of U.S. Army testing by demonstrating its capabilities on a UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter. The flight test was conducted at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Ala., by the Redstone Test Center. The Northrop Grumman CIRCM system was subjected to rigorous conditions over a six-week period, after...
 
 
NASA photograph by David Olive

NASA completes successful battery of tests on composite cryotank

https://www.youtube.com/embed/qkGI6JeNY0E?enablejsapi=1&rel=0 NASA photograph by David Olive One of the largest composite cryotanks ever built recently completed a battery of tests at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Cen...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>