UNMANNED SYSTEMS UPDATE
29 Jan 08. US Special Operations seeks new UAS. US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) representatives appear to be moving forward on the acquisition of a new Small UAS (SUAS). In a pre-solicitation announcement released on 29 January 2008, USSOCOM Procurement Division representatives noted the anticipated issuance of a Request for Proposal (RFP) using full and open competition for a system identified as ‘an All Environment Capable Variant (AECV), Small Unmanned Aircraft System.’ (Source: Shephard)
30 Jan 08. The Canadian Forces will lease unmanned aerial vehicles for the Afghanistan mission and is in discussions with the U.S. government for early delivery of Chinook helicopters. The two initiatives were quietly under way before the Manley report detailed them last week as a condition for continuation of the Afghan mission. Such equipment is seen by military leaders as vital in reducing the number of Canadian casualties, particularly from roadside bombs.
Details of the lease of long-range tactical UAVs to replace the existing Sperwer drones in Afghanistan is expected to be released to the defence industry in a month or so, according to industry officials. Attempts to convince the U.S. military to divert some of its own order of Chinook helicopters for immediate Canadian use is ongoing and Canadian defence officials want to take their case for that right up to U.S. Defence Secretary Robert Gates. (Source: Shephard)
03 Feb 08. The Russian military is to test the Dozor-2 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), designed by the Tranzas Company, the corporate-owned Russian military news agency Interfax-AVN website reported on 1 February. “A batch of 12 Doroz-2 UAVs, designed to undergo military tests, has been put into production,” Tranzas’s UAV chief designer Gennadiy Trubnikov told AVN from an event in Moscow entitled the 2nd International Forum “Unmanned multipurpose systems for the fuel and energy industry”. “Dozor-2 military tests are expected to start in early 2008. If they are a success, the Dozor-2 could be fielded with the Russian Border Guard Service,” Trubnikov said. According to him, a set of three UAVs, with replaceable nose sections, and a mobile command and control post will be provided for the military tests: The replaceable nose section can be fitted with an optical TV system including a high-resolution camera; a high-resolution forward/side-looking video camera; or a thermal imaging camera. “A good-quality video system enables the Dozor-2 to land during night-time,” he said. The takeoff weight of the Dozor-2 UAV is 38 kg, its payload up to 8 kg, length 2.6 m., wing span 4.4 m., range up to 1,200 km, cruise speed 80-150 kph, and service ceiling up to 4,000 m, AVN notes. The Dozor-2 also boasts long endurance – of up to 10 hours, it adds. (Source: Interfax-AVN/Google)