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 July 29, 2015

News: Lockheed F-35s reliability found wanting in shipboard testing¬†– The Marine Corps’ version of Lockheed Martin’s F-35 fighter demonstrated poor reliability in a 12-day exercise at sea, according to the U.S. military’s top testing officer.   Business: Rockwell Collins to upgrade Boeing comms system¬†– Rockwell Collins will upgrade the low-frequency transmi...
 
 

News Briefs July 29, 2015

U.S. Navy examines health concerns near Guantanamo court A complaint lodged with the Pentagon has prompted the U.S. Navy to look into the possible presence of anything that may cause cancer in a section of the base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, a military spokeswoman said July 28. The Navy Marine Corps Public Health Center and...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Betty R. Chevalier

New interrogation system installed on AWACS, more in pipeline

Air Force photograph by SrA. Betty R. Chevalier An E-3 Sentry AWACS from Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., prepares to land May 16, 2015. AWACS have the capability to detect enemy as well as friendly aircraft at great distances usi...
 

 

Remains of Pearl Harbor victims raised for identification

The military July 27 exhumed more caskets containing the unidentified remains of USS Oklahoma crew members killed in the 1941 bombing of Pearl Harbor. The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency disinterred five coffins from four grave sites at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, where they have rested for decades. The work is...
 
 
Boeing photograph

Boeing Oklahoma City expansion grows facilities, business presence

Boeing photograph July 29, Boeing broke ground on a new laboratory facility in Oklahoma City. Mayor Mick Cornett, Commissioner Brian Maughan, President of Boeing Global Services and Support Leanne Caret, Oklahoma Governor Mary ...
 
 

NASA awards contract to support agency’s human spaceflight programs

NASA has selected Wyle Laboratories Inc., of El Segundo, Calif., to provide biomedical, medical and health services in support of all human spaceflight programs at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. The work supports ongoing research aboard the International Space Station and helps enable the journey to Mars. The Human Health and Performance contract...
 




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=""> <s> <strike> <strong>