The Navy has been experimenting with carrier-based unmanned strike aircraft, such as the Northrop Grumman X-47B unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV).
The UCLASS system will be interoperable for joint forces at levels 1 to 4 per STANAG 4586, and have the capability to transfer control of the aircraft, sensors, and weapons among operators at U.S. military sea and land-based facilities. The system will use secure, jam-resistant line-of-sight and beyond-line-of-sight communications to transfer information and receive control instructions.
The UCLASS system will consist of the air vehicle, mission system, and a remote vehicle control system; a control segment that connects to external U.S. military and carrier air wing assets, Navy and U.S. military networks and satellite systems, and existing U.S. military tasking, collection, processing, exploitation, and dissemination; an aircraft carrier launch and recovery system, and a systems support.
The UCLASS aircraft avionics will include infrared and other electro-optical sensors, as well as radar and radio communications that are compatible with other carrier air wing systems.
The first part of the UCLASS program involves a study of alternative designs, concepts of operations, and systems requirements. Companies interested must respond to the Navy quickly. To be considered, companies must submit offers no later than 29 April 2011 -- one month away.
Send proposals to Naval Air Systems Command, Attn: Mr. Robert Muretta, UCLASS Contracting Officer (AIR-18.104.22.168.1); NAVAIRSYSCOM HQ, 47123 Buse Road, Suite 256, Patuxent River, MD 20670-1547. For questions or concerns, contact Muretta by phone at 301-757-5913, or by e-mail at [email protected].
More information is online at https://www.fbo.gov/spg/DON/NAVAIR/N00019/N00019-11-R-0031/listing.html.