Military Embedded Systems

Due Regard Radar from General Atomics tested on manned aircraft


February 22, 2012

John McHale

Editorial Director

Military Embedded Systems

SAN DIEGO. Engineers at General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA ASI) in San Diego tested a prototype of its Due Regard Radar on a manned aircraft. The radar, internally funded by GA-ASI, supports the company?s Predator B Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) radar-based airborne sense-and-avoid architecture.

Equipping UAS with the sense and avoid capability enables it to operate in international and domestic airspace by complying with civilian aviation airspace regulation, company officials say.

For the test the radar was installed on a surrogate Twin Otter aircraft. The radar system, which is based on an Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, detected “intruder” King Air aircraft encroaching on the Twin Otter’s airspace during the test. The test goal was to collect data for algorithm development, laying the way for more manned flight testing.

Once manned flight tests are complete, testing will start on unmanned aircraft. Development work will continue until the radar reaches a technology readiness level of 7, tentatively enabling the system to be introduced to customers in 2015. GA-ASI officials say they plan to add the radar to other Predator/Gray Eagle aircraft.


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