Wanted: one unarmed aerial vehicle; must be able to take off from ships.The Coast Guard is in the market for a new vertical unmanned aerial vehicle A powered, aerial vehicle that does not carry a human operator, uses aerodynamic forces to provide vehicle lift, can fly autonomously or be piloted remotely, can be expendable or recoverable, and can carry a lethal or nonlethal payload. to fly off the deck of its new national security cutters The United States Coast Guard National Security Cutter (NSC) is one design among several new cutter designs developed as part of the Integrated Deepwater System Program. .
It will take a look at any UAV UAV Unmanned Aerial Vehicle
UAV Unmanned Air Vehicle
UAV Unmanned Aerospace Vehicle
UAV Unmanned Airborne Vehicle
UAV Uninhabited Air Vehicle
UAV Urban Assault Vehicle
UAV Unpiloted Aerial Vehicle (less common) that meets its requirements, but it has to be fully tested and ready to go into production before the service will consider it, said Rear Adm. Gary Blore Gary Blore is a Rear admiral of the United States Coast Guard.
Blore attended the Coast Guard Academy, and graduated in 1975. From 1977 until 1982, he served as a helicopter aircraft commander at Coast Guard Air Station Brooklyn, NY. , the service's assistant commissioner for acquisition.
"We really need to see somebody else to develop the product and have it technologically ready, and production ready for manufacturing. And that's what we're kind of waiting for," he told reporters.
The Coast Guard ended its contract with Bell Helicopters, which was tasked with developing a UAV that could take off and land while the ships were at sea. Bell and the Coast Guard have said the halt in development was a matter of funding, not for any technical challenges.
A UAV is needed in the Integrated Deepwater System to provide long-range over the horizon intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance. Conventional helicopters, which will be used to provide these services until an aerial drone is deployed, cover about 9,000 square nautical miles. An unmanned aircraft Unmanned Aircraft (UA) is a term used in the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) definition of Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS). UA refers to the aircraft portion of the system required to operate it, also known as Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. can cover up to 56,000 square nautical miles and do so at a much lower operating cost.
The catch is that the Coast Guard will not pony up any developmental funds to help a potential manufacturer make the aircraft.
Deepwater is no longer into the technology development business, Blore said.
It wasn't always so. The program initially attempted to design its fast response cutters with composite hulls, which is a technology that didn't have a long track record in military ships, It had to abandon those plans after spending $26 million.
One possible solution is the Navy' s MQ-8B Fire Scout, which is manufactured by Northrup Grumman, Blore said.
Northrop is a partner with Lockheed Martin For the former company, see .
Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) is a leading multinational aerospace manufacturer and advanced technology company formed in 1995 by the merger of Lockheed Corporation with Martin Marietta. in the Integrated Coast Guard Systems joint venture, which is the primary contractor working with the Coast Guard on Deepwater.
The problem is that the rotary-wing UAV doesn't have an integrated radar in its sensor suite. The Navy didn't initially need one on the aircraft, but is looking at adding funds in the 2009 and 2010 budget requests to do so, he added.
"Once it has an integrated radar it would be very attractive to us," Blore said. "There may be other [vertical] UAVs on the horizon ... [but we] don't know Don't know (DK, DKed)
"Don't know the trade." A Street expression used whenever one party lacks knowledge of a trade or receives conflicting instructions from the other party. of any as far along as Fire Scout," he said. Northrop was spending some of its own funds to add radar capabilities onto the unmanned helicopter, he said.
It's "not unlikely sometime in the next year that you will see a Fire Scout on the back of a national security cutter doing test and evaluations to determine its compatibility with the cutter," he said.
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