Class I UAV
Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Origin: United States of America
Parent System: Class I UAV
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 2014
Total Production: ?
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Description: The Class I Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) airborne surveillance platform concept was born within the broad US Army's Future Combat Systems initiative. It is one of four airborne unmanned systems envisaged to provide support for the FCS-equipped fighting force. Class I UAV is meant to provide reconnaissance, security and target acquisition operations in open, rolling, complex and urban terrain. This new platform is targeted at the platoon, company, battalion and brigade levels.
Each FCS Class I UAV system will consist of two aerial vehicles, a dismounted control device and associated ground support equipment. Class I UAV will be provided to selected platforms and dismounted soldiers. Class I micro air vehicle based on a ducted fan design will feature a heavy fuel engine compliant with specific needs of the US Army. The ducted fan will provide hover capability which is critical for vertical take-off, landing and recovery operations. Class I UAV will be fitted with autonomous flight and navigation capabilities.
As of 2005 the entire program is going ahead in cooperation between DARPA and Honeywell with the system development and demonstration contract anticipated in March 2006. The first Class I UAV system is expected to be deployed with the first FCS Unit of Action by 2014. On May 24, 2006, Boeing and SAIC the lead systems integrator for the US Army's FCS awarded Hoenywell as $61 million contract funding the development of the FCS Class I UAV. This Micro Aerial Vehicle (MAV) is designed to serve at platoon level and was scheduled to undergo flight testing beginning in December 2008. IOC was anticipated by 2014. The program was cancelled in 2011.
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