Schiebel’s Camcopter S-100 Unmanned Air System (UAS) and Airbus Helicopters’ manned H145 successfully completed a ‘ground-breaking’ series of manned unmanned teaming (MUM-T) flights.
MUM-T leverages the strengths of both manned and unmanned systems by providing pilots of manned aircraft with the ability to take full advantage of the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities of the UAS and thereby significantly improving safety and decision-making in complex, contested missions.
The purpose of this pioneering demonstration, which took place as part of a technology partnership between the Austrian Armaments and Defence Technology Agency and Schiebel, was to explore the benefits and challenges of delivering MUM-T flight operations, especially those with highly valuable, mission-enhancing advantages for army aviation.
Level five interoperability was achieved by providing the user on board the manned aircraft with full command and control over the UAS and its payload, including launch and recovery.
“This is a perfect example of Schiebel’s commitment to staying at the cutting-edge of developments and capabilities,” said Hans Georg Schiebel, chairman of the Schiebel Group.
“The Camcopter S-100 offers unsurpassed ISR capabilities and as such significantly enhances manned aircraft sensors, which is particularly valuable in complex operations and dangerous environments.”
Mark Henning, program manager at Airbus Helicopters, added: “Smaller UAS with vertical take-off and landing capabilities can, for example, fly around obstacles as trees or buildings closer than a helicopter could. They are able to explore unknown territory and deliver information to the helicopter crew which is operating from a safe position and then step in with the helicopter’s superior effects having received a clear picture from the UAS.”