Outrider UAV added to TCS success string

Outrider UAV added to TCS success string

The Tactical Control System (TCS) developed by the Navy has reached a major development milestone with the successful control of a flight of the Outrider unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at the Alliant Techsystems flight test facility in Glasscock, Texas.

The TCS is being developed under the direction of the program executive office for cruise missiles and joint unmanned aerial vehicles as a ground station capable of controlling all types of Department of Defense tactical UAVs. Over the last two years, program officials said, the TCS has demonstrated its capability to control the Predator, Outrider, Prowler, and GNAT-750 UAVs, as well as one unmanned ground vehicle and one unmanned maritime vehicle.

During the test with Outrider, the vehicle was launched from an Outrider ground control system and seamlessly handed off to a TCS installed in an HMMWV (high-mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicle, or “Humvee”). The TCS then controlled the Outrider in flight and the operations of its electrooptical/infrared payload.

A TCS launch-and-recovery test of a Predator UAV is scheduled for June 1999 at Camp Roberts, Calif. The Milestone II decision point for the program is scheduled for the third quarter of this fiscal year, following which the TCS will enter its engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) phase.

Copyright Navy League of the United States Apr 1999

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