While we wait for the CSAR-X solicitation process to move forward, here’s an update on the much-anticipated (read: extremely delayed) STUAS/Tier II competition from Michel Merluzeau’s G2 Solutions blog.
Industry sources are hopeful that the Department of the Navycould solidify its Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System/Tier IIUnmanned Aircraft System (STUAS/Tier II UAS) program by Christmas.
The competition — for perhaps the last major, all-new UAS by the DOD for several years — was actually supposed to begin last summer, but then the US Navy jumped into the formerly US Marine Corps-only program. It was delayed a year later again after the other services also decided to jump in a big way on the small UAS surveillance bandwagon. G2 Solutions writes:
In our opinion, if requirements inputs from the Marine Corps and Navycan be “normed” without too much extraneous input from the Army or AirForce then a December, 2008 or January 2009 RFP is feasible. If morejointness is foisted upon STUAS/Tier II the system might do a number ofthings adequately at the expense of doing certain things superbly. Insuch a scenario the system might also be late to the party.
For more information about STUAS/Tier II, read my feature on the STUAS competition published in Flight International about five months ago.