Navy gets wheels in motion to start official competition to build carrier-based combat UAV

PATUXENT RIVER NAS Md., 15 April 2014. Four U.S. designers of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are set to square-off in a do-or-die competition to build the first deployable carrier-based combat UAV. U.S. Navy officials have signaled the imminent release of a soliciation to design the Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) aircraft.

Officials of the Naval Air Systems Command at Patuxent River Naval Air Staton, Md., have released a presolicitation (N00019-14-R-0029) that announces plans to release an initial draft solicitation, and subsequently a final solicitation for the UCLASS aircraft.

The upcoming competition will be limited to four of the nation's leading UAV designers -- the Boeing Co. Defense, Space & Security segment in St. Louis; the Lockheed Martin Corp. Skunk Works in Palmdale, Calif.; General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. in Poway, Calif.; and the Northrop Grumman Corp. Aerospace Systems segment in Redondo Beach, Calif.

Related: Navy edges closer to choosing a contractor to build next-generation carrier-based UAV

All four companies have built prototypes of unmanned combat aircraft. Boeing has the X-45N; Lockheed Martin has a variant of its RQ-170 Sentinel; General Atomics has the Avenger; and Northrop Grumman has its carrier-proven X-47B. The formal UCLASS solicitation will be issued only to these companies.

The Navy's UCLASS aircraft will provide a persistent, aircraft carrier-based intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, targeting, and strike capability to support carrier air wing operations, Navy officials say.

(story continues below)

In addition to the aircraft, the UCLASS program involves a control system and connectivity segment and a carrier segment. The government will function as lead system integrator for the UCLASS system.

The UCLASS program will make the most of existing technology to launch and control the unmanned carrier-based aircraft, transfer data, and support persistent surveillance and precision strike operations, Navy officials say.

Related: Navy UCLASS program to develop carried-based unmanned aircraft with surveillance and strike capability by 2018

Plans now call for release of the formal UCLASS request for proposal (RFP) no later than this fall, and contract award in the last half of 2015.

For more information contact Boeing Defense, Space & Security online at www.boeing.com/boeing/bds, Lockheed Martin Skunk Works at www.lockheedmartin.com/us/products/uclass, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems at www.ga-asi.com, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems at www.northropgrumman.com, or Naval Air Systems Command at www.navair.navy.mil.

Easily post a comment below using your Linkedin, Twitter, Google or Facebook account.


Military & Aerospace Photos

Most Popular Articles

Related Products

General Micro "Horizon" C299

The C299 Horizon is a third generation, 6U cPCI SBC module based on GMS’ upgradable CPU technolog...

Rugged Mobile Communications Server

Advanced communications server designed to be deployed in environments where it needs to meet cer...

API DC Link Power Film Capacitors

High reliability DC link capacitors for power inverter applications which require superior life e...

Related Companies

General Micro Systems Inc

Since 1979, General Micro Systems has been providing the most diverse line of single-board computers in the industry....

Elma Electronic Inc

Who we are...   About Elma Electronic Systems   The Systems division of Elma Electronic Inc. supplies the

API Technologies Corp

Who We Are API Technologies is a dominant technology provider of RF/microwave, microelectronics, and security technol...
Wire News provided by   

social activity

Webcasts

Digital signal processing for signals intelligence and electronic warfare

Military & Aerospace Electronics presents an expert Webcast on the latest hardware and software trends for high-performance embedded computing (HPEC) applications in demanding military signals intelligen...
Sponsored by:

Advantages of Intel Architecture Products and Wind River Solutions in Military & Aerospace Applications

This webinar explains the individual advantages of the Intel Architecture hardware, available for long-life supply, and the WRS software portfolio.  There are extraordinary advantages of combining such ...
Sponsored by:

Engineering the VPX high-speed data path for physical and signal integrity

Join Arrow Electronics and TE Connectivity, for an overview webinar of the standards, technologies and trends involving VITA and TE.

All Access Sponsors

View the 2014 Buyer's Guide Now!


Mil & Aero Magazine

May 2014
Volume 25, Issue 5
file

Download Our Apps



iPhone

iPad

Android

Follow Us On...



Newsletters

Military & Aerospace Electronics

Weekly newsletter covering technical content, breaking news and product information
SUBSCRIBE

Defense Executive

Monthly newsletter covering business news and strategic insights for executive managers
SUBSCRIBE

Embedded Computing Report

Monthly newsletter covering news on embedded computing in aerospace, defense and industrial-rugged applications
SUBSCRIBE

Unmanned Vehicles

Monthly newsletter covering news updates for designers of unmanned vehicles
SUBSCRIBE