Gen. John Murray, commanding general of Army Futures Command, eyes future “Combined Arms.”
Warrior Maven: How are the drones and unmanned techniques being networked by way of a new idea for Mixed Arms?
Gen. John Murray: Up at CMU [Carnegie Mellon University] they’re engaged on algorithms to hyperlink floor and air automobiles — and it turns into not manned-unmanned teaming however unmanned-unmanned teaming. Exit on this grid sq. and go determine this menace, so from a floor and air perspective, these automobiles discuss to one another. We’re gathering coaching information to coach our algorithms.
Warrior: The place do issues stand with the Army’s Future Vertical Raise program?
Murray: With Future Vertical Raise there are two traces of effort. They’re each Essential to the Army and we’ve got demonstrated some fairly good agility… together with the power to get into touchdown zones in tight areas like a number of the stuff you may have seen in Afghanistan. One is the Future Lengthy Vary Assault Plane. These are the 2 tech demonstrators which were flying in Fort Price for over a yr now. These had been purely tech demonstrators to show out the expertise. These are on monitor and we’re taking a look at accelerating these plane proper now. They’re tech demonstrators… and we are going to begin taking a look at prototyping plane. Not less than certainly one of them has been north of 200 knots and the opposite has been north of 180. We do not have necessities but as a result of they’re tech demonstrators, at the very least certainly one of them has doubled the vary of the Black Hawk, elevated pace, elevated vary and at the very least certainly one of them has elevated payload.
ARMY PURSUES GROUND-AIR ‘DRONE-TO-DRONE’ UNMANNED SYSTEM WAR TEAMING
Warrior: Will the new assault/scout helicopter change or fly alongside the Apache?
Murray: The opposite is Future Assault Reconnaissance Plane. One of the best ways to place it’s it’ll change the Kiowa Warrior — which we retired just a few years in the past. We took Apaches and put them into the scout position, however Apaches had been by no means designed to be a scout plane. This would possibly not change the Apaches which are within the fleet, however it’ll change the Apaches which are within the scout position. We’re additionally taking a look at a Future Unmanned Aerial System. A few of these are vertical take-off and a few are quadcopters. We now have fielded two brigades and we’ve got two extra this summer season. We may have 5 totally different distributors and 5 totally different designs within the subject earlier than we ever write the necessities doc. They’re flying at Fort Riley, Kansas, as we converse. The fireplace dept was utilizing our UAS to pinpoint fireplace areas and direct firefighters round.
Warrior: I perceive there are some giant steps ahead by way of helicopters controlling drones from the air?
Murray: With manned-unmanned teaming, we are able to launch a drone from a helicopter at the moment and get fairly good vary out of the UAS, which is speaking again to the plane itself, and a floor station. We now have demonstrated some swarming applied sciences the place you may launch a number of UAS that are speaking to one another to execute totally different elements of the mission… and use totally different payload capabilities.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
Warrior: The place does the Army stand on laser weapons improvement? Is the service taken with rail weapons?
Murray: The Army checked out rail weapons at UT [University of Texas] again within the mid-90s and the issue with rail weapons just isn’t essentially the burden and measurement of the rail gun itself; it’s the energy necessities. If you’re on a ship, producing the facility you need is a bit simpler than producing the facility you need out in the course of the desert someplace … so there are nonetheless some expertise challenges to rail weapons they usually largely focus on energy technology.
You possibly can say the identical factor for lasers, as energy is turning into higher because the scaling of this expertise progresses. Now we’re on monitor to get a medium-class laser on a Stryker in an air protection position and subject it 2024 or 2025 as a prototype.