GA-ASI and US Army Test Advanced Data Links and Avionics Enhancements for Gray Eagle Extended Range UAS – sUAS News


General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) has successfully tested an advanced data link capability as part of a US military-funded development effort to upgrade the unmanned aircraft system ( UAS) MQ-1C Gray Eagle Extended Range (GE-ER).

During December testing, joint U.S. Army and GA-ASI ground demonstration demonstrated GE-ER’s ability to maintain link and support high-bandwidth data rates with satellites Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) Ku/Ka band and Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) Ka band satellites with common hardware and software. This allows the modernized GE-ER to conduct uninterrupted flight operations across multiple satellite constellations to support continuous operations in contested environments.

“Extensive use of the principles of the Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA), together with Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE), has made this capability possible,” said the vice president of programs at GA-ASI’s army, Don Cattell. “Along with our U.S. Army teammates, we are making significant progress in preparing the GE-ER for successful operations in contested environments. Completing the modernization of the GE-ER will enable mission success for capabilities the highest priorities of the army.

Advanced waveform capabilities were also tested at this event. The diversity of satellite constellations combined with multiple line-of-sight options for interfacing with the modernized GE-ER provides resilient and robust communications with supported maneuver units and manned aeronautical assets.

Flight testing of the modernized GE-ER system is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2022.

About GA-ASI

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), a subsidiary of General Atomics, is a leading designer and manufacturer of reliable and proven remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) systems, radars and mission systems electro-optical and related, including the Predator® The RPA series and the Lynx® Multimode radar. With nearly seven million flight hours, GA-ASI provides long-endurance, mission-capable aircraft with integrated sensor and datalink systems necessary to provide persistent flight that enables situational awareness and a quick strike. The company also produces a variety of ground control stations and sensor control/image analysis software, provides pilot training and support services, and develops meta-material antennas.

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