Pentagon draws up UAV road map

DOD highlights its top 10 goals for the unmanned aerial vehicles' future capabilities

"Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Roadmap: 2002-2027"

Related Links

"Intercepts"

The Defense Department today outlined its road map for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for the next 25 years, highlighting its top 10 goals for the fledgling vehicles' future capabilities.

DOD will promote a common vision for future UAV-related efforts by making its plans available to industry and allies. The document stated that UAVs will play a central role in the military's transformation to a more agile and technologically superior force.

The purpose of this road map is to help identify the key areas for improvement," said Dyke Weatherington, deputy of the UAV Planning Task Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics.

Weatherington said the road map is a "living document" and will be updated as technology improves and further capabilities are defined.

One key area of focus is what DOD is calling weaponization — giving UAVs the ability to carry weapons and controllers the authority to fire them. Accompanying such ability, however, comes an added degree of risk and responsibility, Weatherington said.

"One of the aspects [that complicates the situation is] positive control of the weapons," he said. "When you remove a human from the aircraft and you move that functionality for weapons control somewhere else, that requires an additional burden on the system to make sure you're maintaining positive control."

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is working on an unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV), which is designed to have the ability to suppress enemy air defenses, strike targets and carry out electronic attacks.

The warfighter needs to have confidence in the UAV system to perform the mission it is designed for, Weatherington said. The UAV needs to deliver to the end user the capabilities it promises.

The department's top UAV 10 goals are:

* Develop and operationally assess for potential fielding a UCAV capable of performing several missions, including suppression of enemy air defenses, strike and electronic attack. Due date: fiscal 2010.

* Develop and demonstrate a tactical UAV-class aviation heavy-fuel engine suitable for use in UAVs such as Shadow, Pioneer and A-160. Due date: fiscal 2005 to 2007.

* Have the secretary of Defense, the Joint Staff and the military services develop the capability and the performance metrics to evaluate UAV program costs. Due date: fiscal 2003.

* Demonstrate high-definition TV capability with real-time precision targeting capability on a UAV. Due date: fiscal 2005.

* Migrate all tactical and above UAVs to common data link-compatible formats for line-of-sight and beyond-line-of-sight communications. Due date: fiscal 2006.

* Investigate aerodynamics with a focus on improving digital flight control systems optimized for small UAVs. Due date: fiscal 2006.

* Define a standard UAV interface providing critical situational awareness data and precise location data supporting airspace integration. Due date: fiscal 2004.

* Coordinate revising a Federal Aviation Administration order for special military operations and replace it with a military flight plan generator. Due date: fiscal 2004.

* Define security measures for positive control of weapons on weaponized UAVs. Due date: fiscal 2008.

* Decrease the annual mishap rate of larger UAVs to less than 20 per 100,000 flight hours by fiscal 2009 and less than 15 per 100,000 by fiscal 2015.

NEXT STORY: Ridge steps up homeland security

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.