AUVSI 2012: Cargo UAS still on the table for US Army
By Daniel Wasserbly
Although the US Army does not yet have plans to develop or procure a cargo unmanned aircraft system (UAS), it is ramping up efforts to study the viability and potential uses for such a platform.
A joint cargo unmanned aircraft system concept of operations (CONOPS) has been developed by Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) to determine how the service would employ an unmanned cargo capability.
"A requirement came in to develop an army cargo UAS CONOPS and we've done that," Colonel Grant Webb, TRADOC's UAS capability manager, said during a 7 August briefing at the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) 2012 conference in Las Vegas.
The document was approved by the army's aviation centre of excellence and is now being studied for approval by the service's other centres of excellence.
"What it says is we're taking a basic capability for a VTOL [vertical take-off and landing] UAS, operated at certain temperatures, certain density altitude, able to lift a certain amount; we're not really focusing on the platform itself," said Col Webb.
The CONOPS document describes how the army would employ the cargo UAS.182 of 400 words
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