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8/1/2015

HALEUAVsComeofAge

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HALEUAVsComeofAge

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AUVSIReview2007
CurrentEdition/BackIssues

TheHighAltitude,LongEndurancemissionprofilewasnevermeanttobeusedwith
mannedplatform,butisperfectlysuitedforunmannedsystems.Onlyfewmannedaircraft

Channels:

arepreparedtoflyandoperateatthesealtitudes.ThethinairattheTropopauselimits

Armoredvehicles

theuseofconventionalengines,butopensnewhorizonsforsurveillance,

C4ISR&NetCentric

communicationsandelectroniceavesdroppingactivities.Afterovercomingthetechnical

CombatAircraft

obstacles,missionplannerscouldbenefitfromunobstructedoperationsataltitudeswell

FireSupport

abovecivilianormilitaryairtraffic.Atthesealtitudes,theatmosphereiscalm,thethinair

FutureCombatSystems

causesreduceddrag,resultinginlessenergyrequiredtomaintainhighergroundspeed.

HomelandSecurity

Aircraftflyingattheseloftyaltitudesarewellabovethejetstreamandotherhighvelocity

InfantryWarfare

currents,averaging4080knotsinspeed,withpeaksofupto160knots.These

Logistics&Support

currentsencounteredatthehightroposphere,ataltitudesbetween20,000to35,000ft.,

NavalSystems

usuallyaffecttheperformanceofaircraftoperatingatmediumaltitudes.(more...)

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PrecisionStrike
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Protection&Survivability
SpecialOperationsCT
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DefenseExhibitions

UnmannedAircraftwill
introduce'SeaChange'

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RelevantLinks:
UpcomingEvents
UAVSystems
TheUSNavyBroad
AreaMarine
Surveillance(BAMS)
Program

Untiltheearly2000s,onlyfewmannedplatformscouldsoartosuchheights.Oneofthe
firsttoexplorethesealtitudewastheLockheedU2strategicreconnaissanceaircraft,
designedinthelate1950s.Adecadelater,theSR71Astrategicreconnaissanceaircraft,
unofficiallyknownasthe"Blackbird,"wasusedaslongrange,advanced,strategic
reconnaissanceaircraft.ThefirstflighttookplaceonDec.22,1964.Thenthe'Blackbird'
servedfor22yearsprovidingstrategicreconnaissancemissionsandwasretiredin1990
onlytoreturnfiveyearslatertofillacriticalreccegap.Throughoutitsnearly24year
career,theSR71remainedtheworld'sfastestandhighestflyingoperationalaircraft.
TheSR71flewatmorethanthreetimesthespeedofsound(Mach3)ataltitudesin

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HALEUAVsComeofAge

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excessof80,000feet(approximately15mileshigh).
ThesuccessoroftheU2,theU2R'DragonLady'isstilloperationaltoday.Designedfor

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highaltitudeintelligenceandreconnaissancemissions,thisaircraftcanflyabove70,000

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extensivelyduringoperationIraqiFreedomin2003andprovidedimportantdamage

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WiththearrivaloftheRQ4AGlobalHawk,themissionsofU2Rwerereducedtothose
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(Block20,30and40)aircraftarefielded,capableofcarryingheavierpayloads,including

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Onesuchsystemisthe
IntegratedSensorIsStructure
(ISIS)developedbyLockheed
MartinAeronautics.ISISwill
provideanewmodelforpersistent,autonomousISRplatform.Utilizingastationary
stratosphericairship,ISISwillestablishapositiononthe'highground'atanaltitudeof
70,000ft.Thisairshipwillbedeployedforlongmissions,stayinginpositionforone,five
oreventenyears.Itwillprovideapersistentearlywarningsensorabletodetectcruise
missilesatdistancesof600kilometersordismountedenemycombatantsatarangeof
300km.
SmallerbutbutnotlesseffectiveforitsproposedmissionistheGlobalObserverhigh
altitudeUAVsystemdevelopedbyAerovironment.Thisaircraftwasdesignedtoprovide
longdwellingstratosphericcapabilitywithglobalrangeandnolatituderestrictions.
Operatingattheseheights,theplatformsprovides'nearspace'capabilitycomparableto
satellites,providingservicessuchaspersistentISRandcommunicationsrelay,including
dedicatedcommunicationssupportandsatellitelinkredundancyforotherUAVs.
Anothersystemunder
developmentbyAuroraFlight
ScienceandBoeingisthethe
Orion,HighAltitude,LongLoiter
(HALL)UnmannedAerial
System.Thisstratospheric
platformwillbeabletocruiseat
analtitudeof65,000ftforabout
100hours,poweredby
reciprocatingenginesconsumingliquidhydrogenfuel.Withagrosstakeoffweightof
7,000lbs(3.175tons)HALLwillbeabletocarrypayloadsweighingabout400lbs
(181kg).TheU.S.Army/SMDCissupportingateamleadbyAuroraandBoeingasa
strategicpartner,developingtwoOrionHALLplatforms,todemonstratethenew
technology.Firstflightisexpectedby2009.AuroraandBoeinghavealsoteamedsince
2004onaBoeingledconceptdefinitionstudyofatwinengine,largerunmanned

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HALEUAVsComeofAge

platformdesignedformissionsoveraweeklong,carryingmultisensorpayloads
weighingupto2,000lbs.
Flyingattheedgeofspacein
thehighstratosphere,afuture
unmannedaircraftcouldone
daycarryweaponsorother
payloadsanywhereintheworld
withinfewhours,ordeploy
cargotolowerspaceorbit,
respondingwithinminutesto
urgentmissionrequirements.
Thesehighflyerswillbedesignedtocarryourfaststrikesdeepintoenemyterritory,
anywhereintheworld.SuchaprojectknownasFALCONispursuedbyDARPAandthe
USAirForce.LockheedMarin,thesystem'sdeveloperisplanningtoflythefirstFALCON
demonstratorbytheendof2018,andispreparingtohavesuchplatformoperationalin
about10years.
AsimilarplatformexpectedtobedemonstratedaroundthattimeistheX51WaveRider,
developedbyBoeing.ThisvehiclewilldemonstratecapabilitiessimilartotheFALCON,
asBoeingaimstocompetewithLockheedMartintofulfillthefutureUSAFrequirement
forglobalstrikewiththehypersonicatmosphericvehicles.ThewaveRiderwillintegratea
scramjetenginedevelopedbyPratt&Whitney,aboostrocketmotorderivedfroman
ATACMSmissilematchedwithanairframebuiltbyBoeing.Itwilldemonstrate
accelerationfromboost(Mach4.5+)toMach67cruise.
Topicscoveredinthisreview:
UnmannedSystemsFlightandGroundDemonstration2007
UAVsystems,includingCombatUAVs
Mini,MicroandExpendableUAVSystems
ThefutureUSMCTierIIprogram
HighAltitudeLongEndurance(HALE)Platforms
UnmannedTransportVehicles
MissionControlSystems&Applications
AdvancedpayloadsforunmannedSystems
UGVsandControlsSystems

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