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U.S. Army to demonstrate Manned Unmanned System Integration Concept

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October 31, 2010

An integration exercise will feature Apache helicopter pilots controlling Shadow (pictured...

An integration exercise will feature Apache helicopter pilots controlling Shadow (pictured), Hunter and Raven UAVs

The U.S. Army is planning the largest ever demonstration of its Manned Unmanned Systems Integration Concept (MUSIC). The technology, which we first covered back in 2006, allows pilots to control the payload of a nearby Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) from the cockpit of an Apache Attack helicopter. The demonstration to be held at Dougway Proving Ground, Utah, is aimed at analyzing the progress of evolving manned-unmanned teaming technologies and will showcase level-4 UAS interoperability, which includes the ability to control the payload and view feeds from UAS systems in real-time from the cockpit.

"It's going to be the largest single demonstration of interoperability between manned and unmanned systems ever conducted," said Tim Owings, deputy project manager for Army unmanned aircraft systems.

During the U.S. Army exercise, an Apache AH 64D Block III will be exchanging information with and exchanging command and control while in flight of the Grey Eagle, Hunter, Shadow and Raven UAVs.

"The Block III Apache is going to take control of the UAS, point the payload and do a mission. All the other systems will see Apache video and Kiowa video. We will have a Universal Ground Control Station on the ground as well," said Owings.

The demonstration is set to take place in September 2011.

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag.   All articles by Darren Quick
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