15 Jul 14. General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. announced its successful participation in NATO’s Unified Vision (UV14) Trial at Ørland Main Air Station in Brekstad, Norway, May 19-28. Sponsored by the NATO Joint Capability Group on Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (JCGISR), the Joint ISR (JISR) trial focused on demonstrating the ability to deliver JISR effectively to the warfighter and decision-makers and to increase operational effectiveness of the Joint Forces. UV14 was attended by over 2,000 participants from NATO partner nations, as well as Australia, Finland, and Sweden. GA-ASI participated in the trial for the second time, demonstrating a Predator® B/MQ-9 Reaper® surrogate (manned King Air 350) with a Lynx® Block 20A Multi-mode Radar, a FLIR Star SAFIRE 3800HD Electro-Optical/Infrared (EO/IR) sensor, and L-3 Com Tactical Common Data Link (TCDL), along with GA-ASI’s Claw® payload management software, System for Tactical Archival, Retrieval, and Exploitation (STARE) software, and Link 16 integration. GA-ASI’s involvement was highlighted by the effectiveness of its STARE networking system, which filled critical gaps in collecting and disseminating Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery, stationary and moving target information (both ground and maritime), and Standard and High-Definition (HD) video to NATO coalition shared databases during the various operational scenarios. The system can archive or rebroadcast feeds from multiple systems, including the Reaper surrogate, Norwegian and German P-3s, a Norwegian F-16, the U.S. Army’s Persistent Threat Detection System (aerostat) and its associated Persistent Ground Surveillance System, and Italian Raven and Romanian Hirrus Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). The Reaper surrogate successfully demonstrated all-weather capabilities with the Lynx radar and participated in all mission profiles, including flights during inclement weather. GA-ASI’s Claw® sensor control and image analysis software provided coordinated command and control of the radar and FLIR sensor, while STARE provided Processing, Exploitation and Dissemination (PED) capabilities. STARE also was utilized to rebroadcast and share Reaper and other NATO ISR data successfully across multiple levels of security to unclassified and classified NATO network partners and provide “Reaper” Link 16 position and targeting information to all NATO air assets participating in the trial. Both raw ISR data and derived products can be disseminated with STARE, using open standard formats to DoD and NATO coalition systems such as Distributed Common Ground System (DCGS) and NATO Coalition Shared Database (CSD).
15 Jul 14. The Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle demonstrator Taranis – the most advanced aircraft ever built by British engineers – has successfully completed a second phase of flight testing, the UK MoD and BAE Systems revealed. During these latest tests Taranis flew in a fully ‘stealthy’ configuration, making it virtually invisible to radar. In order to achieve an unprecedented level of stealth, the team changed all antennas on the aircraft to signature control variants and the air data boom on the nose of Taranis was removed. Following these modifications Taranis used a specially-designed system which allowed the aircraft to generate a full set of flight data, without the use of an external probe or boom. Taranis also used a cutting edge communications system to ensure it was able to stay in touch with its mission commander without giving away its position to the enemy.
Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology Philip Dunne said: “The success of these test flights is an important milestone for the Taranis project. We are gaining vital insights into the potential of unmanned aircraft and this knowledge will shape future capabilities and help reduce the risks faced by military personnel on the frontline. I am determined to continue investing in these world-leading projects to show us the future, toda