FALLS CHURCH, Va., April 10, 2006 /PRNewswire/—Raytheon Company has successfully simulated simultaneous command and control of two unmanned air vehicles (UAV) and an unmanned surface vehicle from a single common control system.
Under contract from NAVAIR (Naval Air Systems Command) and U.S. Navy Program Execution Office for Strike Weapons and Unmanned Aviation (PMA-263), Raytheon used the Multiple Vehicle Control System (MVCS), a derivative of the Tactical Control System (TCS). The MVCS is a STANAG 4586-based rapid prototyping asset used for advancements and evaluation of future ground control station capabilities and functionality. STANAG 4586 is a specification that allows members of the NATO alliance to share information obtained by their unmanned air vehicles.
"The unmanned air systems (UAS) that are deployed today consist of one ground station with one type of air vehicle," said Steve Daniel, the demonstration effort program manager for NAVAIR, PMA-263. "The state-of-the-art in UAS system development is one ground station with multiple air vehicles. This experiment demonstrates how the TCS program is going even further by using a single TCS-based ground station to control multiple, air and surface unmanned vehicles."
"We have a long standing relationship with NAVAIR and PMA-263, and we continue to develop the latest innovations in UAS technology for the Navy," said William P. Jones, vice president of Tactical Intelligence Systems for Raytheon's Intelligence and Information Systems business.
The demonstration was the first of its kind to use a single MVCS to simultaneously command and control multiple unmanned vehicle types while receiving and displaying multiple streaming video feeds. The demonstration followed a script for a special operations team rescue scenario in a littoral environment. The scenario involved the detection and engagement of enemy forces and relocation from a primary to a secondary extraction point resulting from dynamically exercising command and control of dissimilar vehicles and payload imagery.
The scenario included cross-cueing and collaborative interaction between a strategic simulated unmanned air vehicle, two Manta tactical UAVs flying over Sierra Vista, Ariz., and an unmanned surface vehicle operating in the Chesapeake Bay near Norfolk, Va. All unmanned vehicles and their payloads were simultaneously and continuously controlled by a single MVCS in the demonstration control center located in Falls Church, Va.
Raytheon has been under contract with NAVAIR, PMA 263, since 2000, providing ground control systems for the TCS program. Earlier this year, Raytheon provided command and control to the TCS program for the RQ-8A Fire Scout UAV during the successful completion of nine autonomous shipboard takeoffs and landings while operating off Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md.
Raytheon Intelligence and Information Systems, with 2005 sales of $2.5 billion, is a leading-edge provider of information and intelligence solutions to the government, providing the right knowledge at the right time. Raytheon Company (NYSE:RTN), with 2005 sales of $21.9 billion, is an industry leader in defense and government electronics, space, information technology, technical services, and business and special mission aircraft. With headquarters in Waltham, Mass., Raytheon employs 80,000 people worldwide.