Schiebel and Airbus Helicopters demonstrate Manned UnManned Teaming
On April 17, Schiebel’s Camcopter S-100 UAS and Airbus Helicopters’ manned H145 successfully completed a series of manned-unmanned teaming (MUM-T) flights.
The user onboard the manned aircraft was provided full command and control over the UAS and its payload — including launch and recovery — allowing Level 5 interoperability to be achieved.
The demonstration took place as part of a technology partnership between the Austrian Armaments and Defense Technology Agency and Schiebel. The purpose of the demonstration was to look into the benefits and challenges of delivering MUM-T flight operations, especially those with “highly valuable, mission-enhancing advantages for army aviation.”
As a true force-multiplier, MUM-T leverages the strengths of both manned and unmanned systems by providing manned aircraft pilots with the ability to take full advantage of the UAS' intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, which significantly improves safety and decision-making in “complex, contested missions.”
“This is a perfect example of Schiebel’s commitment to staying at the cutting-edge of developments and capabilities,” says 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.”
UAS are ideal for providing an aerial overview, “operating above manned assets whilst the manned assets benefit from using local terrain,” the companies say.
Commanders are able to maximize the advantages offered by both platforms, thanks to this approach of enhancing coverage and timeliness of information while keeping pilots and manned assets safe.
“Manned-unmanned teaming multiplies the capabilities of both systems,” says Mark R. Henning, program manager at Airbus Helicopters.
“Smaller UAS with vertical takeoff 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.”
Schiebel’s Chief Technical Officer, Chris Day, says, “another key advantage of such an approach is improved datalink security. The datalink between the manned and unmanned platform can be moved from a static to a dynamic environment, away from the ground, making it more robust and harder to detect.”AirPayloadsUAS