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  • Reaper Ramp Up
    Posted by Robert Wall 8:47 AM on Oct 29, 2010

    The mission set for the General Atomics Reaper unmanned aircraft is expanding.

    Efforts currently underway should make the hunter-killer a much more effective hunter.

    The U.S. Air Force is looking to move forward on integrating the ASIP-2C signals intelligence payload onto the MQ-9. The system is a cousin of the ASIP-1C for the Predator unmanned aircraft, and also derived from the signals intelligence payload Northrop Grumman has developed for the U-2 and Global Hawk unmanned aircraft.

    The system is not, yet, ready for fielding. However, USAF is looking to now integrate the system, in development for about two years now, onto a MQ-9 and its associated ground station to undertake proper system trials before pushing the communications intelligence payload into user hands.

    Additionally, Lockheed Martin has announced the first flight of the MQ-9 with its Tracer (or Tactical Reconnaissance and Counter-Concealment-Enabled Radar) sensor. Tracer is a dual-band synthetic-aperture radar.

    blog post photo
    Photo: Lockheed Martin

    The MQ-9 installation uses an external unpressurized pod to house the radio frequency portion of the system, Lockheed Martin says.

    Tags: ar99, Reaper, MQ-9, GeneralAtomics, unmanned

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