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Lost-Links and Mid-Air Collisions- The Problems With Domestic Drones

April 18, 2012 in Featured

A map of current military remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) operations as of 2011 is presented with an overlay of flight paths through the national airspace in a U.S. Air Force Chief Scientist presentation. Public Intelligence Most of the public discussion surrounding the use of drones both internationally and domestically has focused on issues of privacy or civilian casualties. Due to the technical complexity of drone operations, there has been little media examination of the practical feasibility of widespread domestic drone deployment. In February, the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2012 was signed into law clearing the way for more than 30,000 domestic drones by 2020. The law requires the FAA to create procedures for commercially-operated drones by 2015 and enables law enforcement agencies to operate small-scale drones at low altitudes. While this has a number of negative implications for the right to privacy, such as the lack of any laws governing

the usage of data collected via drones, the thought of a future where U.S. skies are filled with an array of drones has a much larger, more practical problem: is it even logistically possible to operate thousands of pilot-less aircraft in the domestic airspace?
Lost-Links

The first set of problems that will likely plague any attempt at the widespread use of drones inside the U.S. relate to frequency allocation and electromagnetic interference (EMI). In order to be controlled from a remote location, drones must communicate via with a ground control station via some sort of data link. In order for this link to be maintained, there must be protection against electromagnetic interference that can disrupt the communications link. If the interference is sufficient in scale, it can lead to what is called a lost link event causing the drone to lose contact with its operator. Sometimes the link is reestablished and the pilot is able to maintain control of the drone. Sometimes the link cannot be reestablished and the drone is effectively turned into a zombie that can drift far from its intended target, as may have occurred recently with the RQ-170 captured by Iran in December 2011. A U.S. Air Force Scientific Advisory Board report from April 2011 obtained by Public Intelligence warns of the potential vulnerabilities of communications links used for remotely piloted aircraft (RPAs): Limited communications systems result in communications latency, link vulnerabilities, and lost-link events, which limits mission roles assigned to RPAs, operational flexibility, and resiliency in the face of unanticipated events. The report notes that there are a wide range of methods that a determined adversary can use for attacking RPA guidance and navigation systems such as constructing simple GPS noise jammers that can be easily constructed and employed by an unsophisticated adversary.

A diagram of the data link between a drone and its ground data terminal (GDT). The data transmitted through the GDT is sent to a ground control station (GCS) where the drone pilot operates the unmanned aircraft. Finding unallocated frequencies that can be used for drone aircraft can also be a difficult task. For example, when the Department of Defenses Joint Spectrum Center analyzed the deployment of Predator B drones in 2004 along a section of the Mexico-Arizona border, they conducted extensive analysis of the potential for electromagnetic interference and other frequency disruptions. The report examines potential conflicts between Mexican fixed microwave links, National Science Foundation radio astronomy observatories and various other potential sources of interference. When several Predator drones were needed for tests at Creech Air Force Base in Nevada, the Joint Spectrum Center had to study the potential for interaction with residential indoor and industrial outdoor radio local area networks, outdoor video surveillance networks and other potential signals arising from a nearby residential community. The issue of communications interference and lost-link events is a major concern and failure of [common data link or CDL] communications due to EMI has resulted in numerous UAS accidents according to a 2010 U.S. Army Command and General Staff College report. The omnidirectional antennas the aircraft uses to establish the CDL leaves the system open to interference. Environmental EMI from communications systems produce sufficient energy to disrupt CDLs and are responsible for 15 percent of Army UAS accidents. To make matters worse, the data links used to communicate with many types of drones are completely unencrypted. In 2010, the Air Force produced a report on lessons learned from the use of small unmanned aircraft systems (SUAS) that argues the current communications systems used by smaller drones are vulnerable and unsustainable: Many of the current SUAS use datalink equipment that is not interoperable with other datalinks or tunable to other frequencies. In fact, the number of available proprietary SUAS frequencies is so limited US military SUAS operations are threatened by interference from other operations. Additionally, SUAS datalinks are unencrypted and are thus susceptible to enemy exploitation. Since datalinks are also unprotected, GCS are jammable and locations can even be triangulated and possibly physically attacked.
Mid-Air Collisions

The second set of problems facing domestic drones center around their ability to avoid collisions both in the air and with objects on the ground. Current military drone operations in places like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen occur in an airspace environment that is relatively unoccupied. There is not a tremendous amount of air traffic in Somalia, for example, or Yemen and the terrain is largely devoid of high-rise buildings and other grounded objects that could create impediments to small-scale drone operations. Yet, even in these environments, avoiding collisions and deconflicting airspace is a major concern for drone operators. A U.S. Army handbook designed to inform soldiers about airspace control details the complex procedures necessary for the safe and effective use of small unmanned aerial vehicles (SUAVs) in combat missions. First a mission plan must be organized and approved before being

submitted to an airspace control authority who analyzes the plan against other proposed mission plans for deconfliction. If there are conflicts between the proposed mission and other activities occurring in the area, then the mission is adjusted to maintain safe control over the airspace. The handbook repeatedly warns that Failure to conduct airspace coordination prior to SUAV operations may contribute to a mid-air collision resulting in severe injury or death to personnel.

A diagram of the small unmanned aerial vehicle (SUAV) mission planning process as presented in a U.S. Army manual. In fact, mid-air collisions have occurred in the course of combat operations. In May 2011, a RQ7B Shadow and a C-130 cargo plane collided over Afghanistan. Though no one was injured, the C-130 was forced to make an emergency landing. In response to the incident, a FAA spokesperson told AOL Defense that there are several studies indicating that you could not use TCAS to reliably have other aircraft detect the unmanned aircraft. TCAS or the Traffic Collision Avoidance System is the standard technology used by commercial aircraft around the world to help avoid mid-air collisions. The system, based on transponders that operate in each aircraft independent of air traffic control, reportedly has difficulties incorporating drones due to their lack of a pilot and often unpredictable flight patterns. A U.S. Air Force study conducted by MIT states that TCAS was designed under the assumption that a pilot was onboard the aircraft to interpret displays and perform visual acquisition. The TCAS traffic display is intended to aid visual acquisition by indicating the proper sector to search out the cockpit, but does not by itself provide sufficient bearing or altitude rate accuracy to support avoidance

maneuvers. The role of a TCAS traffic display in a UAV ground control station is therefore under debate. The FAAs own website makes it clear that due to drones inability to comply with sense and avoid rules, a ground observer or an accompanying chase aircraft must maintain visual contact with the UAS and serve as its eyes when operating outside of airspace that is restricted from other users. A 2011 presentation from the U.S. Air Force Chief Scientist acknowledges this need for increased integration of domestic drone operations into the national airspace, as well as improvement in collision avoidance systems capable of surviving lost-link events where the drone loses contact with its ground control station. The potential for mid-air collisions has already caused problems for domestic drone operations in Hawaii, where the state purchased a $70,000 drone to monitor Honolulu Harbor without the knowledge that FAA approval would be required to operate the device. When the FAA analyzed the case, they found that traffic from Honolulu International Airport and a nearby Air Force base made operating the drone too dangerous and denied the states request. Situations like this will likely arise with greater frequency as the push toward domestic drone operations is continued in the U.S. and other Western countries.

Drones over U.S. get OK by Congress


By Shaun Waterman The Washington Times Tuesday, February 7, 2012

U.S. Customs and Border Protection uses qualified pilots to operate Predator drones for surveillance along the border. Under the FAA Reauthorization Act, drones eventually could be used by police agencies and private companies across the U.S. (Associated Press)

Look! Up in the sky! Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Its a drone, and its watching you. Thats what privacy advocates fear from a bill Congress passed this week to make it easier for the government to fly unmanned spy planes in U.S. airspace.

The FAA Reauthorization Act, which President Obama is expected to sign, also orders the Federal Aviation Administration to develop regulations for the testing and licensing of commercial drones by 2015. Privacy advocates say the measure will lead to widespread use of drones for electronic surveillance by police agencies across the country and eventually by private companies as well. There are serious policy questions on the horizon about privacy and surveillance, by both government agencies and commercial entities, said Steven Aftergood, who heads the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists. The Electronic Frontier Foundation also is concerned about the implications for surveillance by government agencies, said attorney Jennifer Lynch. The provision in the legislation is the fruit of a huge push by lawmakers and the defense sector to expand the use of drones in American airspace, she added. According to some estimates, the commercial drone market in the United States could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars once the FAA clears their use. The agency projects that 30,000 drones could be in the nations skies by 2020. The highest-profile use of drones by the United States has been in the CIAs armed Predatordrone program, which targets al Qaeda terrorist leaders. But the vast majority of U.S. drone missions, even in war zones, are flown for surveillance. Some drones are as small as model aircraft, while others have the wingspan of a full-size jet. In Afghanistan, the U.S. use of drone surveillance has grown so rapidly that it has created a glut of video material to be analyzed. The legislation would order the FAA, before the end of the year, to expedite the process through which it authorizes the use of drones by federal, state and local police and other agencies. The FAA currently issues certificates, which can cover multiple flights by more than one aircraft in a particular area, on a case-by-case basis. The Department of Homeland Security is the only federal agency to discuss openly its use of drones in domestic airspace. U.S. Customs and Border Protection, an agency within the department, operates nine drones, variants of the CIAs feared Predator. The aircraft, which are flown remotely by a team of 80 fully qualified pilots, are used principally for border and counternarcotics surveillance under four long-term FAA certificates. Officials say they can be used on a short-term basis for a variety of other public-safety and emergency-management missions if a separate certificate is issued for that mission.

Its not all about surveillance, Mr. Aftergood said. Homeland Security has deployed drones to support disaster relief operations. Unmanned aircraft also could be useful for fighting fires or finding missing climbers or hikers, he added. The FAA has issued hundreds of certificates to police and other government agencies, and a handful to research institutions to allow them to fly drones of various kinds over the United States for particular missions. The agency said it issued 313 certificates in 2011 and 295 of them were still active at the end of the year, but the FAA refuses to disclose which agencies have the certificates and what their purposes are. The Electronic Frontier Foundation is suing the FAA to obtain records of the certifications. We need a list so we can ask [each agency], What are your policies on drone use? How do you protect privacy? How do you ensure compliance with the Fourth Amendment? Ms. Lynch said. Currently, the only barrier to the routine use of drones for persistent surveillance are the procedural requirements imposed by the FAA for the issuance of certificates, said Amie Stepanovich, national security counsel for the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a research center in Washington. The Department of Transportation, the parent agency of the FAA, has announced plans to streamline the certification process for government drone flights this year, she said. We are looking at our options to oppose that, she added. Section 332 of the new FAA legislation also orders the agency to develop a system for licensing commercial drone flights as part of the nations air traffic control system by 2015. The agency must establish six flight ranges across the country where drones can be test-flown to determine whether they are safe for travel in congested skies. Representatives of the fast-growing unmanned aircraft systems industry say they worked hard to get the provisions into law. It sets deadlines for the integration of [the drones] into the national airspace, said Gretchen West, executive vice president of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, an industry group. She said drone technology is new to the FAA. The legislation, which provides several deadlines for the FAA to report progress to Congress, will move the [drones] issue up their list of priorities, Ms. West said.

Open Source Analysis of the RQ-170 Stealth Sentinel Loss to Iran

Courtesy of Recorded Future: https://www.recordedfuture.com/rf/s/2z0Cm4

The loss of the RQ-170 Stealth Sentinel drone to Iran is potentially one of the most critical events that has occurred in 2011 because it implies an offensive electronic warfare or cyber capability that no one expected Iran to have. Now that Iran has released a video of the captured drone and the U.S. government has confirmed that it's authentic, it's clear that the original FARS report claiming that it was captured via electronic means may have been accurate in spite of unanimous Western media reports to the contrary; i.e., that it was shot down. EMEA's strategic intelligence report on the RQ-170 says that the Stealth Sentinel is a high altitude and long endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) designed and manufactured by Skunk Works, a division of Lockheed Martin Corporation, for the United States Air Force (USAF). According to EMEA: The UAV can capture real time imagery of the battlefield and transfer the data to the ground control station (GCS) through a line of sight (LOS) communication data link. The 27.43m wide and 1.82m high aerial vehicle was designed to execute intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and target acquisition (ISTAR) and electronic warfare missions over a target area. According to Earl Lum, President of EJL Wireless Research LLC what is supposed to happen when an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) like the RQ-170 loses its comms link is that it should autonomously follow a pre-programmed lost-link profile consisting of waypoints at various altitudes, forming a loop until it re-establishes contact or crashes. The communication link for the UAVs is typically today LOS (line of sight). If it falls below the mountains and loses LOS, it is supposed to then go through this process. However while this applies to UAVs in general it may not be the case with the RQ-170. Navigation technology According to the EMEA report, the RQ-170 can be controlled either manually from the GCS or through autonomous mode. An automatic launch and recovery (ALR) system facilitates the aircraft to land safely when communication with the control station fails.

Ground control station The GCS of the RQ-170 displays the real time imagery or videos captured by the vehicle's payload cameras onboard. The data supplied by the vehicle is retrieved, processed, stored and monitored at the control station which was designed and built by Skunk Works. The GCS tracks, controls and monitors the RQ-170 by transferring commands to the vehicle via LOS SATCOM data link. The sentinel is being operated by 432nd wing of air combat command (ACC) at Creech Air Force Base, Nevada, and 30th reconnaissance squadron at Tonopah Test Range, Nevada. Related cyber incidents that may have compromised the RQ-170: - A South Korean newspaper, JoongAng Daily, reported in December 2009 that the RQ-170 was flight tested in South Korea to supersede the U-2 aircraft at Osan Air Base for carrying out missions over North Korea. North Korea is an ally of Iran and has conducted offensive CNE (Computer Network Exploitation) and CNA (Computer Network Attack) missions against South Korea repeatedly for several years. It's unknown what information has been stolen however this type of intelligence is highly sought after and its reasonable to assume that the DPRK would include it on a CNE acquisitions list. - Lockheed Martin reported a cyber attack in June, 2011 that lasted about one week. LM didn't report what was taken however as with the DPRK example, UAV research has been targeted at U.S. defense firms as late as this past summer according to my own confidential sources. - Creech Air Force Base experienced a malware infection that impacted its UAV Ground Control Stations in October 2011. It's public report on the incident was confusedly written and lacked details regarding the malware involved, its propagation and its remediation. Summary The objective of this article is to assess possibilities. Based on EMEA's report on the RQ-170, it appears that the drone had the ability to land itself without operator control. I'd appreciate hearing from any experts who can confirm whether that's the case or not. If it is, then Iran may have lucked out. If it isn't, then Iran's claim that it used its electronic warfare capacity to assume operational control of this substantial U.S. military asset appears to be true. Considering how easy it is for an adversary to conduct CNE against targeted U.S. networks, this is probably a capability that they obtained from one of many mercenary hacker crews who engage in that type of activity. While the scope of this article is hypothetical, the CNE targeting of UAV R&D is a fact born out by my own company's work in this area. Iran may or may not have that capability now but eventually it will. The RQ-170 event should be a massive wake-up call on the part of the U.S. Air Force to reinstall a selfdestruct capability, harden the RQ-170's operating system, and examine potential vulnerabilities in its UAV fleet supply chain. UPDATE (1528 PST 09DEC11): From an article in today's SF Gate: The most frightening prospect raised by what appears to be a largely intact Sentinel is that the Iranians' second claim about how they brought it down -- by hacking into its controls and landing it themselves -- might be true, said a U.S. intelligence official, who spoke only on the basis of anonymity because the RQ-170 is part of a Secret Compartmented Intelligence (SCI) program, a classification higher than Top Secret. The official said the possibility that the Iranians or someone else hacked into the drone's satellite communications is doubly alarming because it would mean that Iranian or other cyber-warfare officers were able to disable the Sentinel's automatic self-destruct, holding pattern and return-to-base mechanisms. Those are intended to prevent the plane's secret flight control, optical, radar, surveillance and communications technology from falling into the wrong hands if its controllers at Creech Lake Air Force Base or the Tonopah Test Range, both in Nevada, lose contact with it. UPDATE (1708 PST 22DEC11): Cryptome has an interesting thread on the use of the RSA cyber to protect the GPS Red band used on military systems like the RQ-170. This suggests that data from the RSA breach last March may have been shared with the Iranians. UPDATE (0715 PST 05JAN12): AviationWeek has an excellent technical article on the F-22 technology used on the RQ170. Related: Was Iran's Downing of RQ-170 Related to the Malware Infection at Creech AFB? How Iran May Have Captured An RQ-170 Stealth Drone U.S. Air Force Demonstrates How Not To Report A Malware Attack

Posted 9th December 2011 by Jeffrey Carr

Labels: Korea Skunk Works rq-170 sentinel drone Iran Lockheed Martin Creech AFB

(U//FOUO) U.S. Air Force Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (SUAS) Airpower Lessons from Iraq and Afghanistan
The United States Air Force has long envisioned a strategic role for remotely piloted and autonomous aircraft. As early as May 1896, Samuel Pierpont Langley developed an unpiloted heavier-than-air vehicle which flew over the Potomac River. On V-J Day in August 1945, General Hap Arnold, US Army Air Forces, observed: We have just won a war with a lot of heroes flying around in planes. The next war may be fought by airplanes with no men in them at all Take everything youve learned about aviation in war, throw it out of the window, and lets go to work on tomorrows aviation. It will be different from anything the world has ever seen. Since these early days, extended range, persistence, precision, and stealth have characterized remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) advancements. RPAs have been employed in multiple combat roles and increasingly contested environments. This year, for the first time in history, the Presidents budget proposed a larger investment in RPAs than manned aircraft. A seemingly insatiable operational appetite for RPAs, however, has led to an Air Force manning bottleneck. This is exacerbated by a lack of common ground stations, unsatisfactory integration with civilian and international airspace, and vulnerabilities in communications and command and control links. Further complicating efforts, yet essential in irregular warfare, are directives to minimize civilian casualties. General David Petraeus sees this need as a direct way to support a key center of gravity: We must fight the insurgents, and will use the tools at our disposal to both defeat the enemy and protect our forces. But we will not win based on the number of Taliban we kill, but instead on our ability to separate insurgents from the center of gravity the people Our Panel conducted an extensive set of visits and received numerous briefings from a wide range of key stakeholders in government, industry, and academia. Taking a human-centered, evidence-based approach, our study seeks to address operational challenges as well as point to new opportunities for future RPAs. That RPAs will be a foundational element of the Air Forces force structure is no longer debatable. The real question is how to maximize their current and future potential. Our intention is that this study will help provide both vector and thrust in how to do so in the irregular warfare context, as well as other applications. RPAs are revolutionary surveillance and weapons delivery systems changing the way the Air Force builds situation awareness and engages enemy forces but their full potential has yet to be

realized. To begin to address this issue, the Air Force initiated this study to review the state-ofthe-art in RPA operations, focusing on control and connectivity in an irregular warfare (IW) environment. The Panel was specifically tasked to identify RPA architectures and operational concepts centered on human-systems integration, distributed systems operations, and effective command and control a cluster of concepts and technologies we subsequently labeled as mission management enablers. The Panel was also tasked to recommend mid- to far-term S&T development roadmaps for advancing these technologies to improve the flexibility and capability of RPA operations. The study terms of reference (TOR) identified a number of core issues which were further articulated by the Study Panel to include: 1. Issue #1: Manning and personnel shortfalls are concerns in RPA deployment. Exploiters represent the largest manning dependency (39 percent), exacerbated by expected significant exploiter growth from new sensor suites (e.g., ARGUS-IS, Gorgon Stare). Current sensors (e.g., Constant Hawk and Angel Fire) and expected sensors (e.g., ARGUS-IS) produce data at rates of 10 to over 1000 times projected communications data transmission capacities, and will far exceed human analytic capacity. 2. Issue #2: Manually intensive airspace management and integration requiring exclusion zones and Certificates of Authorization (COAs) make inefficient use of national and international airspace, will not scale to accommodate future RPA growth, hampers manned/unmanned integration, and presents special challenges for small RPAs. 3. Issue #3: Minimizing collateral damage (CD) and fratricide is not a requirement unique to RPA strike operations. For manned and unmanned platforms, the lack of positive ID (PID) and tactical patience are the most significant causes of civilian casualties (CIVCAS) in current conflicts (8 percent CIVCAS compared with 66 percent caused by insurgents). Persistence; upclose access; highresolution intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR); improved situation awareness; and improved mission management will permit RPAs to minimize CD/fratricide. Small-focused lethality munitions and non-lethal options for RPAs promise to further minimize CD and CIVCAS (e.g., as low as 5 percent). 4. Issue #4: In spite of current low RPA losses, inexpensive physical threats (e.g., MANPADS, low-end SAMs, air-to-air missiles) and electronic threats (e.g., acoustic detectors, low cost acquisition radars, jammers) threaten future operations. 2.3 Issue (3): Minimizing Collateral Damage/Fratricide A third issue identified by the Study Panel was collateral damage/fratricide (Figure 2-8). RPAs, originally developed for ISR operations, have become important weapons platforms for tactical and special strike missions in IW. Their expanded use in CAS missions in the future requires technology improvements for mission management to minimize fratricide, collateral damage (CD), and civilian casualties (CIVCAS). In IW, success requires winning the hearts and minds of the population in the face of an adaptable and agile adversary hiding amongst them. A missile fired (e.g. Hellfire missile) from a

RPA is no different from a Hellfire missile fired from other platforms like the AH-64 Apache. Causing collateral damage is not an issue unique to RPAs. Data obtained from the Afghanistan AOR17 confirms that insurgents have caused approximately two thirds of CIVCAS. The exact number of CIVCAS caused by US forces was not reported, but an estimate from available data suggests the figure to be less than 10 percent. Of these CIVCAS, approximately half were caused by air-to-ground munitions, but the role of RPAs in these CIVCAS was also not reported. In the majority of these CIVCAS, inadequate acquisition and maintenance of positive target identification (PID) was the primary cause, and the ability to provide tactical patience during operations would have improved mission success and minimized CIVCAS. In an article by the Washington Post, it was reported that within a recent 15-month period, the CIA conducted 70 RPA strikes using the low collateral damage focused lethality Scorpion weapon, killing 400 terrorists and insurgents while causing 20 CIVCAS. This CIVCAS figure was based on the use of RPAs to conduct pre-strike ISR and post-strike battle damage assessments. Because of precision targeting and focused lethality, CIVCAS is now primarily dependent on the human intelligence and situation awareness upon which the targeting decision is based. 3.3.4 Encryption and Potential C2 Link Vulnerabilities Historically, sensor/data downlinks for some RPAs have not been encrypted or obfuscated. Unencrypted sensor data (e.g., FMV) is beneficial because the downlink is used to feed ROVER systems used by Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (JTAC) and other ground personnel, including uncleared coalition members and contractors. This is a life-saving capability. Nevertheless, not protecting against interception of sensor data has been criticized. Fixing this security issue by mandating NSA Type 1 encryption is likely to lead to an unacceptable key management burden because of the large number of users of RPA data that have a wide variety of access rights. However, commercial-grade, NSA-approved cryptography is available (Suite B). Commercial cryptography of this kind does not require the same degree of rigor in handling key material and encryption devices, and is not limited in operation to cleared personnel. There is relevant Department of Defense (DOD) activity in this general area. Encryption has generally been used on C2 messages because the risks associated with compromise are higher (loss of the vehicle), and there is a greatly reduced need for sharing of the C2 data as compared with sensor data. However, crypto issues will likely be exacerbated when doing coalition/joint swarming across platforms that require shared C2 across security domains a capability that is desired to fully exploit the potential of networked RPA operations.

(U//FOUO) U.S. Army Predator Drone Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Tactical Pocket Guide
EMPLOYMENT OF GROUP 3/4/5 ORGANIC/NON ORGANIC UAS TACTICAL POCKET GUIDE

MQ-1B PREDATOR, MQ-1 WARRIOR A, MQ-1C ER/MP, MQ-9 REAPER, MQ-5B HUNTER, RQ-7B SHADOW Joint Unmanned Aircraft System Center of Excellence (JUAS-COE) 178 pages For Official Use Only February 2010

THIS POCKET GUIDE PROVIDES INFORMATION USED BY BATTLE STAFFS INVOLVED IN PLANNING, COORDINATING, SYNCHRONIZING OR EXECUTING ACTIONS THAT SUPPORT THE EFFECTIVE EMPLOYMENT OF UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS (UAS) ON THE BATTLEFIELD. ALTHOUGH THIS POCKET GUIDE IS PRIMARILY FOCUSED ON NON-ORGANIC UAS, THOSE ASSETS CONTROLLED AT DIVISION LEVEL OR HIGHER, BOTH ORGANIC AND NONORGANIC UAS ARE STILL NEW TOOLS TO MOST UNITS. UNDERSTANDING THE CAPABILITIES AND LIMITATIONS OF UAS CURRENTLY USED BY U.S. FORCES WILL HELP STAFFS MORE EFFECTIVELY USE THESE KEY ASSETS TO THE FULLEST POTENTIAL IN SUPPORT OF GROUND UNIT OPERATIONS. UAS Planning UAS currently bring numerous ISR and Tactical Air Support capabilities to Army units, providing near-real-time reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition (RSTA) and fires. They can be employed on the forward line of own troops (FLOT), on the flanks, or in rear areas. Employed as a team, UAS and manned systems provide excellent reconnaissance and attack resolution. Most UA can be fitted with laser designators to mark targets and others may be armed. Other key capabilities include route, area, and zone reconnaissance, Battle Damage Assessment (BDA), passing target coordinates, teaming with manned systems, and communication relay. Planning for organic and non-organic UA as an integrated element within the combined arms team can be challenging and is essential. UAS Employment In general, employment of UAS support of tactical operations falls into two major categories: ISR and Tactical Air Support. Specific employment of UAS capabilities and platforms are a function of enemy, terrain, weather, troop location, support, time availability, and civil considerations (METT-TC).

ISR Missions ISR is an activity that synchronizes and integrates the planning and operation of sensors, assets and processing, exploitation, dissemination systems in direct support of current and future operations. UAS ISR missions are broadly considered tactical air reconnaissance or surveillance. Reconnaissance Reconnaissance missions obtain combat information about enemy and indigenous population activities and resources through sensor payloads. Route Reconnaissance Is the directed effort to obtain detailed information of a specified route and all terrain from which the enemy could influence movement along that route. UAS, with multi-sensor capabilities, are well-suited to reconnoiter the front, flanks and rear providing early warning, ambush detection, and over watch. Additional UAS support roles are: ground element over watch, trafficability assessment, landing site and hazard location, threat and suspicious item identification. The best results occur when synchronized and commanded by ground elements. Kill Boxes is a three-dimensional fire support coordinating measure (FSCM) used to facilitate the expeditious air-to-surface lethal attack of targets, which may be augmented by or integrated with surface-to-surface indirect fires. Restricted operating zones/areas (ROZ/ROA) is airspace of defined dimensions created in response to specific operational situations (e.g. UAS launch and recovery zone) or requirements within which the operation of one or more airspace users is restricted.

(U//LES) Radio Frequency Jammers Used to Disrupt Communication Devices


(U//LES) Radio frequency jammers are devices designed to prevent communication devices from operating by deliberately broadcasting disruptive radio transmissions on the frequencies used by the targeted devices. Radio frequency jammers have been used to interfere with communications between law enforcement officers.

(U//FOUO) U.S. Air Force Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (SUAS) Airpower Lessons from Iraq and Afghanistan
Enduring Airpower Lessons from Operation ENDURING FREEDOM (OEF) and Operation IRAQI FREEDOM (OIF) is one of three lessons learned (L2) focus areas directed by the Chief

of Staff of the Air Force (CSAF) at CORONA Top 2008. This report is the third and last in a series of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) L2 reports produced for fiscal year 2009 and focuses on Small UAS (SUAS) capabilities and issues. Five key observations provide insight into SUAS issues: OBSERVATION 1: Insufficient analysis and education exist on the capabilities of SUAS and how they could be effectively employed by the USAF. OBSERVATION 2: The USAF does not have a comprehensive strategy for the acquisition, sustainment and development of SUAS capabilities; and the USAF has not properly funded SUAS programs. OBSERVATION 3: HQ AFSOC received funding and has developed the first Air Force SUAS Formal Training Unit (FTU). OBSERVATION 4: There are no full-time, dedicated professional uniformed Group 2 and 3 UAS operators and maintainers. OBSERVATION 5: Frequency and bandwidth management, communications infrastructure and datalinks will only be more stressed with the proliferation of SUAS; and SUAS Ground Control Station (GCS) frequencies are unencrypted and unprotected. OBSERVATION 5: Frequency and bandwidth management, communications infrastructure and datalinks will only be more stressed with the proliferation of SUAS; and SUAS GCS frequencies are unencrypted and unprotected. Discussion: With the proliferation of SUAS on the battlefield of the near future, the current SUAS GCS proprietary datalinks are not flexible and sustainable. Many of the current SUAS use datalink equipment that is not interoperable with other datalinks or tunable to other frequencies. In fact, the number of available proprietary SUAS frequencies is so limited US military SUAS operations are threatened by interference from other operations. Additionally, SUAS datalinks are unencrypted and are thus susceptible to enemy exploitation. Since datalinks are also unprotected, GCS are jammable and locations can even be triangulated and possibly physically attacked. Not all Group 2 and 3 UAS are Cursor on Target (CoT) capable. Among other capabilities, CoT enables users to communicate from a common set of applications to various datalinks such as Link-16 and Situational Awareness Data Link (SADL). Any GCS standards must deliver CoT compatibility to enable existing CoT systems to seamlessly integrate, thereby decreasing integration costs and simplifying transition. Given that SUAS datalink frequencies are not tunable, they may be prohibited from operating in other regions and countries of the world. This limitation is due to the potentiality of interfering

with host-nation communications frequencies. Additionally, SUAS datalinks are not interoperable with manpack radios, burdening operators to transport multiple pieces of communications hardware on the battlefield. Effective 1 October 2009, Assistant Secretary of Defense (Networks and Information Integration) (ASD (NII)) mandated the use of Common Data Link (CDL) for all UAS greater than 30 lbs. As it was originally designed and fielded in the late 1970s, CDL was adequate. According to HQ AFSOC, CDL is not small enough for Group 1 SUAS operations, but will be leveraged on Group 2 and 3 systems. However, the continued proliferation of CDL enabled airborne assets has already reached a tipping point. CDL is a huge and inefficient frequency space consumer. This dated, yet capable, waveform needs modernization, to include dial-a-rate speeds, more efficient error correction coding, multiple encoding rates, expanded frequency band alternatives (e.g., into L, S, C and extended Ku) and importability to software defined radios. Such modifications could improve UAS density 3 to 15 times what it is today. As it stands, failure to modernize the CDL waveform will limit the number of participants that can operate within a region (or suffer degraded video quality) and require strict frequency deconfliction. Lessons Identified:

Develop tunable, interoperable, and unrestricted SUAS GCS frequencies since available radio frequency spectrum is an essential enabler for UAS operations. Secure and protect SUAS GCS frequencies. Develop SUAS GCS datalinks capable of Voice-Over Internet Protocol (VoIP), video and data multicast. Make all Group 2 and 3 UAS CoT capable. Develop digital SUAS GCS datalinks that are interoperable with field radios. Modernize CDL waveform.

U.S. Army RQ7-B Shadow Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System (TUAS) Handbook
Shadow Troop Handbook

57 pages 2011

1-1. The Shadow TUAS extends the ARS Commanders ability to support the full spectrum of conflict through reconnaissance, security, aerial surveillance, communications relay, and laser designation. 1-2. The UAS supports the full spectrum capability through augmenting all warfighting functions: a. Movement and Maneuver: Provides the full depth of the reconnaissance and security missions in order to aid the ground commander in movement of friendly forces and provide the ground forces with freedom to maneuver. b. Intelligence: The Shadow Troop provides Near Real Time (NRT) intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) and extends the capability through flexible RSTA platforms as an organic asset to the ARS and CAB commanders. They greatly improve the situational awareness of the ARS and aid in employing the Scout Weapons Team (SWT) in high threat environments. c. Fires: Coupling the Communication Relay Package (CRP) with the Laser-Designating (LD) payload, the Shadow aids in all levels of the Decide, Detect, Deliver, and Asses cycle. d. Protection: Through continuous reconnaissance, the Shadow Troop can significantly increase the force protection in and around secure operational bases. e. Sustainment: The Shadow provides reconnaissance and security along supply routes and logistics support areas. Using the CRP, the Shadow can talk directly to the convoy commander for immediate reaction. f. Command and Control: The Shadow greatly increases the ARS commanders ability to control the fight. The CRP package extends radio transmission ranges to 240 kilometers. With proper TTPs, the Shadow can serve as an emergency re-transmitting capability to isolated personnel. 1-3. The Shadow Troop aids the ARS and CAB commanders through the full spectrum of operations from stable peace to general war: a. Peacetime Military Engagement: The Shadow Troop provides counterdrug activities, recovery operations, security assistance, and multinational training events and exercises.

b. Limited Intervention: Provides search for evacuation operations, security for strike and raid operations, foreign humanitarian assistance (search of survivors during disaster relief), and searching for weapons of mass destruction. c. Peace operations: Provides peacekeeping through surveillance and security for peace enforcement operations. d. Irregular Warfare: Assists in tracking enemy personnel while combating terrorism and unconventional warfare. e. Major Combat Operations: Provides the capability to extend the communication of friendly units, emergency retransmitting capability to isolated personnel, target acquisition, and laser designation. ONE SYSTEM GROUND CONTROL STATION POSITIONING 2-6. OSGCS positioning is critical to successful employment of UAS. The OSGCS provides the technical means to receive UA sensor data. The unmanned aircraft operator, PO, and MC assigned to the OSGCS provide tactical and technical expertise to facilitate UAS operations. The CAB commander advises the division commander on placement of this critical UAS component to maximize its effectiveness. The CAB, BFSB, Fires brigade, and BCT conduct disparate missions simultaneously across the division area of operation, with different TTP, focus, and skill sets required. This requires integration of overall aviation operations at division-level to avoid redundancy of effort. An additional consideration is the Shadow platoons in the IBCT BSTBs and the OSGCSs that remain in their control. With a cohesive ATP relationship built between the IBCT Shadow platoons and the ARS Shadow Troop, direct support missions to the IBCT in an extended range environment can be controlled by the IBCT Shadow operators, POs, and MCs. Single-Site Operations 2-7. In single-site operations, the entire UAS unit is co-located. Single-site operations allow for easier unit command, control, communication, and logistics. Coordination with the supported unit may be more difficult due to distance from and communications with the supported unit. In addition, single-site operations emit a greater electronic and physical signature. Split-Site Operations 2-8. In split-site operations, the UAS element is typically split into two distinct sites: the mission planning control site (MPCS) and the L/R site. The MPCS is normally located at the supported units main or tactical CP location. The L/R site is normally located in more secure area, positioned to best support operations.

2-9. The IBCT Shadow platoons should also consider consolidating launch-recovery with the ARS Shadow Troop in order to receive the additional benefits of the ARSs large logistical footprint. The IBCT Shadow platoons can focus directly on the MPCS with forward-staged GCSs. ZONE RECONNAISSANCE 3-20. Zone reconnaissance is conducted to find any significant signs of positions of enemy activity within a given area defined by boundaries. It is conducted only in conjunction with a larger reconnaissance element and is an extremely detailed reconnaissance effort. For this reason, the zone reconnaissance will normally be conducted in a MURT, which will also be a part of a larger task force. 3-21. Similar to the route reconnaissance, the Shadow will extend further towards enemy activity and work further ahead of the Forward Line of Own Troops (FLOT). The Shadow will clear territory for any major threats one phase line ahead of the SWT and report any significant activity. The primary goal of the Shadow during a zone reconnaissance is to ensure the freedom of maneuver for the SWT. The SWT is focused primarily on the freedom of maneuver of the larger friendly reconnaissance element. AREA RECONNAISSANCE 3-22. Area reconnaissance gathers intelligence or conducts surveillance of a specified area. This area may be key terrain or other features critical to an operation. Similar to a route reconnaissance, the TUAS may conduct an area reconnaissance autonomously or in a MURT. 3-23. The autonomous area reconnaissance will focus outwards and move into the objective area. The flanks of the overall objective area are secured; then, reconnaissance efforts are focused inward. UAS may establish a screen on the flank to provide security for ground forces, if used. 3-24. The MURT will use the Shadow to continue reconnaissance efforts on any terrain that can influence the given objective area while the SWT moves inward towards the main objective area. This provides NRT intelligence on any changes or significant activities during the conduct of the reconnaissance. AERIAL SURVEILLANCE 3-25. Aerial surveillance is the systematic observation of aerospace, surface or subsurface areas, places, persons, or things by visual, aural, electronic, photographic, or other means to collect information. Aerial surveillance is usually passive and may be continuous. 3-26. UAS surveillance of base camps, airfields, and key logistic sites in lesser-contested areas may free combat forces to perform other missions and help prevent surprise.

3-27. The TUAS provides easily maintained and lower detectable aerial surveillance to the ARS and CAB commander to help develop the commanders intent and concept of the operation. The Shadow Troop provides 24 hour coverage for an NAI in order to: Track pattern of life VIA Full Motion Video (FMV) Observe a specific area for enemy activity Provide early warning and detection on a specific high speed avenue of approach 3-28. The difference between an aerial surveillance and standard reconnaissance is the amount of movement for the Shadow payload. During an aerial surveillance, the payload should remain generally stabilized to gather information on an extremely specific area of the battlefield.

DHS/CBP Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS)


September 7, 2009 in Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security

Technology Solutions Program Office (TSPO)


18 pages For Official Use Only October 31, 2006

DHS/CBP UAV Program Description Provides Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS), operations, maintenance, technical support, pilots, and sensor operators to surveil the Southwest border of the United States. Over the next several years UAV border surveillance will improve sensor/video surveillance capabilities of the current, monitored base system through persistent 24 hours per day / 7 days per week surveillance; integrate new surveillance technologies (aerial sensor suites), and increase interoperability with other law enforcement agencies and initiatives. Background

UAS use as part of National Objective Establish substantial probability of apprehending terrorists and their weapons as they attempt to illegally enter the United States between the ports of entry Deter illegal entries through improved enforcement Apprehend and deter smugglers of humans, drugs, and other contraband Leverage Smart Border technology to multiply the effect of enforcement personnel

The UAS has demonstrated an ability to enhance operational effectiveness of interdiction elements as part of the National Objective in the areas of: (1) search of high activity areas; (2) remote sensor alarm response; and (3) integration of apprehension operations that enhances situational awareness

Restricted U.S. Military Multi-Service Joint Application of Firepower (JFIRE) Manual


March 18, 2012 in U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy

MULTI-SERVICE TACTICS, TECHNIQUES, AND PROCEDURES FOR THE JOINT APPLICATION OF FIREPOWER

FM 3-09.32 148 pages Distribution authorized to the DOD, DOD contractors, Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom only to protect technical or operational information from automatic dissemination under the International Exchange Program or by other means. December 2007

JFIRE is a pocket-size, quick-reference guide for requesting fire support in accordance with approved joint tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP). JFIRE contains calls for fire, joint air attack team (JAAT) techniques, a format for joint air strike requests, close air support (CAS) coordination and planning procedures, communications architecture, and weapons data. Scope JFIRE applies to the tactical and special operating forces of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force. It is a United States (US) unilateral-only document, but includes some North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) formats where appropriate. Information in JFIRE has been extracted from existing Service directives. It is primarily intended for use by members of battalion and squadronlevel combat units. 5. Unmanned Aircraft Systems Considerations UASs consist of one or more unmanned aircraft (UA), a control station, datalinks, and payloads. The capability of UASs to support or execute CAS varies greatly between systems. For example, US Air Force (USAF) MQ-1 and MQ-9 are armed with air-to-surface weapons, have radio communications aboard the UA, and are flown by rated aviators trained in CAS procedures. Other systems may not be similarly equipped or flown by CAS-qualified crews but may be employed for situational awareness, target marking, or as an observer for Types 2 or 3 control by the controlling JTAC. (See appendices A and B for more information on UASs.) The following UAS CAS considerations are intended for use with CAS-capable UAS and CAS-qualified UAS operators only: a. Threat: Unmanned aircraft are unlikely to survive in a heavily defended environment. Consideration must be given to enemy air-to-air and surface-to-air weapons with the ability to engage a UA at its operating location and altitude. UAs are not normally equipped with warning receivers or countermeasures and depend on threat avoidance for mission survivability. Datalinks may be susceptible to jamming or interference. b. Weather: UAs are susceptible to turbulence, icing, and visible precipitation. Electro-optical (EO) / IR sensors and laser designators / range finders / target markers require unobstructed LOS

to the target. Intervening haze, clouds, or blowing dust may interfere with or prevent mission accomplishment. On the other hand, synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and inertially aided munitions (IAMs) are unaffected by haze, cloud cover, or dust. High winds aloft may make it difficult for the UA to maintain station in a highly restricted location or may unacceptably delay transit between target areas. c. Signature: UAs vary in visual, radar, IR, and acoustic signature and in system ability and crew proficiency to manage the signature. For example, when minimum noise is desired to avoid tipping off a target, it may be possible to modulate power and trade altitude for airspeed in order to reduce the noise signature while approaching closer to a target. On the other hand, it may be desirable to announce presence in order to stimulate a desired response or intimidate the target. d. Deconfliction: While UASs presently lack the ability to see and avoid other aircraft, there are other means to integrate UASs (e.g., voice radio; tactical datalinks; identification, friend or foe [IFF]). Formal and informal airspace control measures apply to UASs. UAs may hold overhead or offset from a target. Relatively slow airspeeds can permit a UA to operate in a smaller segment of airspace than other aircraft. Depending upon performance capabilities of the specific UAS and communications with the crew, it may take several minutes to reposition the UA or change altitude blocks. JTACs must trade off the best position for the UASs to employ sensors / weapons against the desired target(s) with the ability to best employ other assets. Consideration should also be given to the lost link profile autonomously flown by UA if the control datalink is lost. Upon initial check-in, the JTAC should query the UAS operator for the currently programmed lost-link profile. If unacceptable due to airspace limitations or other reasons, the JTAC should direct a new lost-link profile and receive verification that the UA has been programmed. e. Communication and Situational Awareness: Some UAs have onboard radios and / or secure voice providing the ability to communicate with the UAS pilot as with any manned aircraft. In addition, some UASs have secure chat and voice over Internet Protocol, as well as additional air and ground situational awareness displays. Providing the ground scheme of maneuver to the supporting UAS can significantly increase the crews situational awareness and subsequent mission support. f. Video Downlink (VDL) and Machine-to-machine Datalinks: Some UASs can accept and provide machine-to-machine digital targeting information and many UASs provide LOS video downlinks to users with compatible video receivers. This can significantly reduce voice traffic and reduce information transfer errors. (See table 21 VDL Link / Frequency / Player Reference on p.77 for more information.) g. Tactics: UASs employ using a variety of tactics ranging from a wheel to a variant of an IPtarget run-in. UA performance characteristics and sensor and weapons capabilities, along with the environmental and tactical situation, influence the selection of tactics, ranges, altitudes, and timing considerations.

U.S. Military Working to Produce Drones the Size of Insects


June 20, 2011 in News

Experimental drone models at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, two miles from the cow pasture in Ohio where the Wright Brothers learned to fly the first airplanes. Military researchers there are at work on another revolution in the air: shrinking drones to the size of insects and birds. Credit: Chang W. Lee/The New York Times War Evolves With Drones, Some Tiny as Bugs (New York Times): Two miles from the cow pasture where the Wright Brothers learned to fly the first airplanes, military researchers are at work on another revolution in the air: shrinking unmanned drones, the kind that fire missiles into Pakistan and spy on insurgents in Afghanistan, to the size of insects and birds. The bases indoor flight lab is called the microaviary, and for good reason. The drones in development here are designed to replicate the flight mechanics of moths, hawks and other inhabitants of the natural world. Were looking at how you hide in plain sight, said Greg Parker, an aerospace engineer, as he held up a prototype of a mechanical hawk that in the future might carry out espionage or kill. Half a world away in Afghanistan, Marines marvel at one of the new blimplike spy balloons that float from a tether 15,000 feet above one of the bloodiest outposts of the war, Sangin in Helmand Province. The balloon, called an aerostat, can transmit live video from as far as 20 miles away

of insurgents planting homemade bombs. Its been a game-changer for me, Capt. Nickoli Johnson said in Sangin this spring. I want a bunch more put in. From blimps to bugs, an explosion in aerial drones is transforming the way America fights and thinks about its wars. Predator drones, the Cessna-sized workhorses that have dominated unmanned flight since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, are by now a brand name, known and feared around the world. But far less widely known are the sheer size, variety and audaciousness of a rapidly expanding drone universe, along with the dilemmas that come with it. What its doing out here is nothing special, said Dr. Parker, the aerospace engineer. The researchers are using the helicopter to test technology that would make it possible for a computer to fly, say, a drone that looks like a dragonfly. To have a computer do it 100 percent of the time, and to do it with winds, and to do it when it doesnt really know where the vehicle is, those are the kinds of technologies that were trying to develop, Dr. Parker said. The push right now is developing flapping wing technology, or recreating the physics of natural flight, but with a focus on insects rather than birds. Birds have complex muscles that move their wings, making it difficult to copy their aerodynamics. Designing insects is hard, too, but their wing motions are simpler. Its a lot easier problem, Dr. Parker said. In February, researchers unveiled a hummingbird drone, built by the firm AeroVironment for the secretive Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which can fly at 11 miles per hour and perch on a windowsill. But it is still a prototype. One of the smallest drones in use on the battlefield is the three-foot-long Raven, which troops in Afghanistan toss by hand like a model airplane to peer over the next hill.

U.S. Military Working to Produce Drones the Size of Insects


June 20, 2011 in News

Experimental drone models at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, two miles from the cow pasture in Ohio where the Wright Brothers learned to fly the first airplanes. Military researchers there are at work on another revolution in the air: shrinking drones to the size of insects and birds. Credit: Chang W. Lee/The New York Times War Evolves With Drones, Some Tiny as Bugs (New York Times): Two miles from the cow pasture where the Wright Brothers learned to fly the first airplanes, military researchers are at work on another revolution in the air: shrinking unmanned drones, the kind that fire missiles into Pakistan and spy on insurgents in Afghanistan, to the size of insects and birds. The bases indoor flight lab is called the microaviary, and for good reason. The drones in development here are designed to replicate the flight mechanics of moths, hawks and other

inhabitants of the natural world. Were looking at how you hide in plain sight, said Greg Parker, an aerospace engineer, as he held up a prototype of a mechanical hawk that in the future might carry out espionage or kill. Half a world away in Afghanistan, Marines marvel at one of the new blimplike spy balloons that float from a tether 15,000 feet above one of the bloodiest outposts of the war, Sangin in Helmand Province. The balloon, called an aerostat, can transmit live video from as far as 20 miles away of insurgents planting homemade bombs. Its been a game-changer for me, Capt. Nickoli Johnson said in Sangin this spring. I want a bunch more put in. From blimps to bugs, an explosion in aerial drones is transforming the way America fights and thinks about its wars. Predator drones, the Cessna-sized workhorses that have dominated unmanned flight since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, are by now a brand name, known and feared around the world. But far less widely known are the sheer size, variety and audaciousness of a rapidly expanding drone universe, along with the dilemmas that come with it. What its doing out here is nothing special, said Dr. Parker, the aerospace engineer. The researchers are using the helicopter to test technology that would make it possible for a computer to fly, say, a drone that looks like a dragonfly. To have a computer do it 100 percent of the time, and to do it with winds, and to do it when it doesnt really know where the vehicle is, those are the kinds of technologies that were trying to develop, Dr. Parker said. The push right now is developing flapping wing technology, or recreating the physics of natural flight, but with a focus on insects rather than birds. Birds have complex muscles that move their wings, making it difficult to copy their aerodynamics. Designing insects is hard, too, but their wing motions are simpler. Its a lot easier problem, Dr. Parker said. In February, researchers unveiled a hummingbird drone, built by the firm AeroVironment for the secretive Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which can fly at 11 miles per hour and perch on a windowsill. But it is still a prototype. One of the smallest drones in use on the battlefield is the three-foot-long Raven, which troops in Afghanistan toss by hand like a model airplane to peer over the next hill.

Head of DHS Drone Program Under Ethics Investigation


December 7, 2011 in News

U.S. Customs and Border Protection drones used near the Texas/Mexico. Director of federal drone program targeted in ethics inquiry (Los Angeles Times): The chief of the Homeland Security Departments drone aircraft program is facing an ethics investigation for joining the board of directors of the largest industry group promoting the use of unmanned aircraft, officials said Monday.The internal affairs office of U.S. Customs and Border Protection is reviewing whether Tom Faller, director of unmanned aircraft systems operations, violated internal rules when he took an unpaid position as a board member of the Assn. for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International on Aug. 16. Faller oversees eight Predator B surveillance drones that are chiefly used to help search for illegal immigrants and drug smugglers on the northern and southwestern borders. In some cases, the drones also have been used to assist the Drug Enforcement Administration and other law enforcement agencies in criminal investigations, and to survey damage after floods

and other natural disasters. After inquiries from the Los Angeles Times last month, Faller notified the group on Nov. 23 that he was resigning from the board, said Melanie Hinton, a spokeswoman for the drone group. She said Faller did not attend any board meetings. Internal affairs is reviewing issues related to an employees outside associations, Joanne Ferreira, a Customs and Border Protection spokeswoman, said Monday in response to questions about Faller. We are unable to comment on any ongoing investigation. AUVSI Announces Newly Elected Board of Directors (AUVSI): The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) announced during its annual AUVSIs Unmanned Systems North America 2011 its newly elected leaders on its Board of Directors.The Executive Committee will be led by incoming Chairman of the Board Peter Bale, Executive Vice Chair John Lademan, First Vice Chairman Ralph Alderson, Treasurer Joe Brannan; and Immediate Past Chairman John Lambert. Newly elected AUVSI Board of Directors: COL (Ret) John Burke Tom Faller RADM (ret) Timothy Heely Neil Hunter Dr. Mark Patterson Dr. Virginia (Suzy) Young Continuing Board of Directors Members: Michele Kalphat Chris Mailey Chad Partridge Dave Seagle Grant Begley Matt England Gene Fraser Stephen Newton David Place Peter Smith

Pakistani ISI Asks CIA to Stop Drone Strikes


May 23, 2011 in News

Men hold up a placard during a Tehreek-e-Insaf rally against drone attacks in Karachi May 22, 2011. The placard in Urdu reads "Oh cruel leaders, allow us to shoot down drones". REUTERS/Athar Hussain ISI asks US to stop drone strikes (Pakistan Express Tribune): ISI chief Lt Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha is reported to have asked the US to stop its drone strikes in Pakistan in a meeting between CIA deputy director Michael Morrell and senior ISI officials held in Islamabad on Saturday. Pasha, who faced tremendous criticism after the May 2 Abbottabad raid that killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, is reported to have taken a firm stance with the US on the drone strikes in Pakistans tribal areas. We will be forced to respond if you do not come up with a strategy that stops the drone strikes, Pasha is reported to have told Morrell. The ISI chief also described the recent incursion by Nato helicopters into Pakistani airspace as a shock for defence cooperation between the United States and Pakistan. Later on Saturday, Morrell met with operational leaders of the ISI, as well as members of its recently set-up counter-terrorism division. Both sides are reported to have discussed a way forward that would involve the US stopping its drone strikes and expanding joint US-Pakistan operations against militants.

Relations between the CIA and the ISI were strained even before the May 2 unilateral US raid that killed Bin Laden, particularly since January. Earlier, a CIA operative shot and killed two Pakistani men in broad daylight in Lahore. The ISI was publicly embarrassed by the incident and has been pressuring the US to reveal the extent of CIA activities inside Pakistan. Thousands protest against US drone attacks in Pakistan (AFP): Thousands demonstrated in Karachi on Sunday to demand an immediate end to US missile strikes in Pakistans lawless tribal areas and urge the blocking of NATO supplies passing through the country. Activists from the Tehreek-e-Insaf (Movement for Justice) continued a two-day sit-in outside the citys Arabian Sea port, urging the government to end its cooperation with Washingtons war on terror. It is not Pakistans war, this is Americas war. This war has killed thousands of innocent Pakistanis, women and children, the groups leader and former cricketer Imran Khan told the gathering of around 7,000 supporters. Karachi is Pakistans economic hub, home to its stock exchange and a lifeline for a depressed economy wilting under inflation and stagnating foreign investment. The city, the countrys largest, is important to logistical support for NATO forces fighting against Taliban militants in Afghanistan. There was not a single Taliban militant in Pakistan before 9/11 but since we joined this war, we are facing acts of terrorism, bombing and drone strikes, Khan said. The demonstrators chanted anti-US slogans and carried banners and placards reading Death for America and Stop drone strikes in Pakistan. Khan said the US drone strikes were creating suicide bombing factories and urged the government to stop taking foreign aid. These attacks are against Pakistans interests. I ask the government to stop NATO supplies via Pakistan, but I am sure they cant, because these shame-proof rulers are getting dollars, he said.

U.S. Officials Lying About Civilian Deaths From Pakistan Drone Strikes
July 28, 2011 in News Obamas drone war (Bureau of Investigative Journalism):

Claims by a senior Obama administration official that there hasnt been a single collateral [civilian] death in Pakistan drone strikes since August 2010 have been found to be untrue. Research by the Bureau reveals for the first time the extent of civilian casualties in CIA drone strikes in the past year. It comes less than a month after President Obamas chief counter-terrorism advisor John Brennan publicly stated: that nearly for the past year there hasnt been a single collateral death because of the exceptional proficiency, precision of the capabilities that weve been able to develop. Asked on June 29 about US targeted killings, a euphemism which in this case refers to the CIA drone strikes, Brennan responded: One of the things President Obama has insisted on is that were exceptionally precise and surgical in terms of addressing the terrorist threat. And by that I mean, if there are terrorists who are within an area where there are women and children or others, you know, we do not take such action that might put those innocent men, women and children in danger. The Bureaus findings Our analysis of 116 drone strikes that took place between August 2010 and Brennans speech on June 29 reveals: Ten drone strikes in which a total of at least 45 civilians have been killed. Six named children killed by these drone strikes. At least 15 additional strikes are likely to have killed many more civilians. US drone strikes in Pakistan have risen from one a year in 2004 to one every four days under President Obama. The US continues to insist that drone strikes are the most accurate weapon in history. Study Rebuts U.S. Claims of No Civilian Deaths (IPS): As the Pakistani public grows increasingly outraged at the United States drone attacks in the northwest region of the country, a recent study by the London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism is contradicting U.S. officials insistence that not a single civilian life has been claimed in the covert war. Led by British investigative journalist Chris Woods and Pakistani journalist Rahimullah Yusufzai, the study found that at least 45 civilians, including six children, have been killed in 10

drone strikes since August 2010 alone, while another 15 attacks between then and June 2011 likely killed many more. According to the study, civilians die in one out of every five Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)operated drone attacks in the tribal region, located on the border with Afghanistan, a statistic that the Bureau says can no longer be denied by the U.S. government. The Woods-Yusufzai investigation was born in response to a statement made by the U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor and President Barack Obamas assistant on counterterrorism, John Brennan, who told a press conference here last month that the types of operations that the U.S. has been involved in hasnt [resulted in] a single collateral death because of the exceptional proficiency, precision of the capabilities that weve been able to develop. The Bureaus investigation reveals Brennans statement to be baseless.

U.S. Drone Attacks Killed More Than 950 People in Pakistan Last Year
April 16, 2011 in News

Picture taken on the tarmac of Kandahar military airport on June 13, 2010 of a US Predator unmanned drone armed with a missile. AFP PHOTO/Massoud HOSSAINI/POOL

Over 900 killed in drone attacks: HRCP (The Nation Pakistan): As many as 957 persons became victim of the US drone attacks while 12,580 were murdered, 581 were kidnapped for ransom and 16,977 cases of abduction were reported in Pakistan during the year 2010, says a report on State of Human Rights in 2010. The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) launched the report on Thursday during a ceremony held in a local hotel. Dr Mehdi Hasan, Chairman HRCP, and I.A. Rehman, Secretary General of the Commission, were also present on the occasion besides many others. The report depicting the countrys bad law and order situation says that 957 people became victims of US drones strikes during 2010 and what the report called extra-legal killings. It says that 1,159 people were killed in 67 suicide attacks during 2010 and the fatalities included 1,041 civilians while 2,542 people were killed and 5,062 injured in terrorist attacks. Violence, political and otherwise, led to the death of over 750 people in target killings in Karachi alone, says the report. At least 237 political activists and 301 other civilians were killed in target killings in Karachi while 81 people were killed in Lyari gang wars. In addition to that, 118 people were killed and 40 injured in 117 target killings in Balochistan besides bodies of 59 missing persons were found in the province. According to the report, 34 new cases of enforced disappearance were reported to HRCP during 2010. State of Human Rights 2010 (Human Rights Commission of Pakistan): Extrajudicial killings by various actors continued in the country. There were killings by police across the country, US drone strikes in FATA and attacks and targeted killings of members of religious minority and ethnic communities as well as political activists. According to media reports, US drones launched 134 attacks in the tribal areas of Pakistan in 2010, killing at least 957 people and injuring another 383. There was no way of independently verifying claims of killing of militants in these attacks. Several media reports stated that women and children were also among those killed in the drone strikes. The highest number of attacks, 117, was reported from North Waziristan Agency, accounting for 802 deaths and injuries to over 300 persons. In June, HRCP drew the governments attention to the report of a United Nations expert on targeted killings, including those through drone strikes, and urged Pakistan to ensure that the conduct of its own forces was not in violation of human rights and humanitarian law. HRCP stated that such actions did grave damage to the rules designed to protect the right to life and to prevent extrajudicial executions. The report by UN Special Reporter on Extrajudicial Executions Philip Alston had called the United States the most prolific user of targeted killings, primarily through drone attacks, which Mr Alston referred to as ill-defined license to kill without accountability. The report also raised the issue of death of innocent civilians in drone strikes and noted that even [a] consenting state may only lawfully authorize a killing by the targeting State to the extent that the killing is carried out in accordance with applicable IHL [international humanitarian law] or human rights law.

CIA Deaths Prompt Surge in U.S. Drone Strikes


January 24, 2010 in News

By Scott Shane and Eric Schmitt New York Times January 22, 2010 WASHINGTON Since the suicide bombing that took the lives of seven Americans in Afghanistan on Dec. 30, the Central Intelligence Agency has struck back against militants in Pakistan with the most intensive series of missile strikes from drone aircraft since the covert program began. Beginning the day after the attack on a C.I.A. base in Khost, Afghanistan, the agency has carried out 11 strikes that have killed about 90 people suspected of being militants, according to Pakistani news reports, which make almost no mention of civilian casualties. The assault has included strikes on a mud fortress in North Waziristan on Jan. 6 that killed 17 people and a volley of missiles on a compound in South Waziristan last Sunday that killed at least 20. For the C.I.A., there is certainly an element of wanting to show that they can hit back, said Bill Roggio, editor of The Long War Journal, an online publication that tracks the C.I.A.s drone campaign. Mr. Roggio, as well as Pakistani and American intelligence officials, said many of the recent strikes had focused on the Pakistani Taliban and its leader, Hakimullah Mehsud, who claimed responsibility for the Khost bombing. The Khost attack cost the agency dearly, taking the lives of the most experienced analysts of Al Qaeda whose intelligence helped guide the drone attacks. Yet the agency has responded by redoubling its assault. Drone strikes have come roughly every other day this month, up from about once a week last year and the most furious pace since the drone campaign began in earnest in the summer of 2008. Pakistans announcement on Thursday that its army would delay any new offensives against militants in North Waziristan for 6 to 12 months is likely to increase American reliance on the drone strikes, administration and counterterrorism officials said. By next year, the C.I.A. is expected to more than double its fleet of the latest Reaper aircraft bigger, faster and more heavily armed than the older Predators to 14 from 6, an Obama administration official said. Even before the Khost attack, White House officials had made it clear to Dennis C. Blair, the director of national intelligence, and Leon E. Panetta, the C.I.A. director, that they expected significant results from the drone strikes in reducing the threat from Al Qaeda and the Pakistani Taliban, according to an administration official and a former senior C.I.A. official with close ties to the White House. These concerns only heightened after the attempted Dec. 25 bombing of a Detroit-bound airliner. While that plot involved a Nigerian man sent by a Qaeda offshoot in Yemen, intelligence officials say they believe that Al Qaedas top leaders in Pakistan have called on affiliates to carry out attacks against the West. Theres huge pressure from the White House on Blair and Panetta, said the former C.I.A. official, who spoke on condition of anonymity out of concern about angering the White House. The feeling is, the clock is ticking.

After the Khost bombing, intelligence officials vowed that they would retaliate. One angry senior American intelligence official said the C.I.A. would avenge the Khost attack. Some very bad people will eventually have a very bad day, the official said at the time, speaking on the condition he not be identified describing a classified program. Today, officials deny that vengeance is driving the increased attacks, though one called the drone strikes the purest form of self-defense. Officials point to other factors. For one, Pakistan recently dropped restrictions on the drone program it had requested last fall to accompany a ground offensive against militants in South Waziristan. And tips on the whereabouts of extremists ebb and flow unpredictably. A C.I.A. spokesman, Paul Gimigliano, declined to comment on the drone strikes. But he said, The agencys counterterrorism operations lawful, aggressive, precise and effective continue without pause. The strikes, carried out from a secret base in Pakistan and controlled by satellite link from C.I.A. headquarters in Virginia, have been expanded by President Obama and praised by both parties in Congress as a potent weapon against terrorism that puts no American lives at risk. That calculation must be revised in light of the Khost bombing, which revealed the critical presence of C.I.A. officers in dangerous territory to direct the strikes. Some legal scholars have questioned the legitimacy under international law of killings by a civilian agency in a country where the United States is not officially at war. This month, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a request under the Freedom of Information Act for government documents revealing procedures for approving targets and legal justifications for the killings. Critics have contended that collateral civilian deaths are too high a price to pay. Pakistani officials have periodically denounced the strikes as a violation of their nations sovereignty, even as they have provided a launching base for the drones. The increase in drone attacks has caused panic among rank-and-file militants, particularly in North Waziristan, where some now avoid using private vehicles, according to Pakistani intelligence and security officials. Fewer foreign extremists are now in Miram Shah, North Waziristans capital, which was previously awash with them, said local tribesmen and security officials. Despite the consensus in Washington behind the drone program, some experts are dissenters. John Arquilla, a professor of defense analysis at the Naval Postgraduate School who frequently advises the military, said, The more the drone campaign works, the more it fails as increased attacks only make the Pakistanis angrier at the collateral damage and sustained violation of their sovereignty.

If the United States expands the drone strikes beyond the lawless tribal areas to neighboring Baluchistan, as is under discussion, the backlash might even spark a social revolution in Pakistan, Mr. Arquilla said. So far the reaction in Pakistan to the increased drone strikes has been muted. Last week, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani of Pakistan told Richard C. Holbrooke, the administrations senior diplomat for Afghanistan and Pakistan, that the drones undermined the larger war effort. But the issue was not at the top of the agenda as it was a year ago. Hasan Askari Rizvi, a military analyst in Lahore, said public opposition had been declining because the campaign was viewed as a success. Yet one Pakistani general, who supports the drone strikes as a tactic for keeping militants off balance, questioned the long-term impact. Has the situation stabilized in the past two years? asked the general, speaking on condition of anonymity. Are the tribal areas more stable? Yes, he said, Baitullah Mehsud, founder of the Pakistani Taliban, was killed by a missile last August. But hes been replaced and the number of fighters is increasing, the general said. Sabrina Tavernise contributed reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan, and Ismail Khan from Peshawar.

Drone aircraft are patrolling U.S. Cities


April 26, 2010 in News

Public Intelligence Public Intelligence has received several messages from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department requesting the removal of a Law Enforcement Sensitive document which was

published on March 25, 2010 regarding Nevadas Silver Shield infrastructure protection program. The document, which is from November 2007, reveals that Las Vegas Police are using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and systems to patrol the city and deliver aerial imagery during incidents or special events. Though isolated reports of domestic UAV use do exist, there has not been widespread coverage of the growing use of unmanned aircraft systems over U.S. cities. In March 2006, Declan McCullagh of CNET News reported that police agencies around the country were looking at the use of UAVs for all sorts of purposes, including everything from border patrol to domestic surveillance. In an article titled Drone aircraft may prowl U.S. skies McCullagh writes: In a scene that could have been inspired by the movie Minority Report, one North Carolina county is using a UAV equipped with low-light and infrared cameras to keep watch on its citizens. The aircraft has been dispatched to monitor gatherings of motorcycle riders at the Gaston County fairgrounds from just a few hundred feet in the air--close enough to identify faces--and many more uses, such as the aerial detection of marijuana fields, are planned. That raises not just privacy concerns, but also safety concerns because of the possibility of collisions with commercial and general aviation aircraft. In early January 2010, KPRC News Houston reported on the Houston Police Department and the Department of Homeland Security deploying UAVs for surveillance purposes: The document released by Public Intelligence corroborates these previous reports, indicating that as early as November 2007, Nevada law enforcement officials were discussing plans to implement the use of UAVs for aerial surveillance during special events and during incident response. Given the character of earlier reports concerning the use of UAVs in other states, it is reasonable to assume that the usage of these unmanned systems is likely be widespread throughout the U.S. The document also indicates that the UAVs feed into a system that is integrated with the local fusion center, along with various systems for recording and geomapping Suspicious Activity Reports which may be filed by businesses and critical infrastructure throughout the state.

Naval Unmanned Aircraft Systems Airworthiness


August 18, 2009 in U.S. Navy

NTSB UAS Conference


Pete Heasley 13 pages For Official Use Only April 30, 2008

The Navys Airworthiness Office (AIR-4.0P) is responsible for the independent engineering assessment of all aircraft (manned and unmanned) and airborne weapon systems to ensure these air vehicles can be operated safely within defined operating limits. U.S.C. Title X, Chapter 503, Section 5013, Secretary of the Navy SECNAVINST 5400.15B

CNO has delegated the authority to COMNAVAIRSYSCOM (AIR-00) to issue flight clearances for all Navy/Marine Corps Manned and Unmanned aircraft via the following: For NATOPS: IAW OPNAVINST 3710.7T For NATIP/TACMAN: IAW OPNAVINST 3510.15 For Interim Flight Clearances (IFC): IAW 3710.7T These Flight Clearances are issued IAW NAVAIRINST 13034.1C

UAS In general, a flight clearance is required for any Navy/USMC-owned or Navy/USMC-leased UAS or aerial target IAW OPNAVINST 3710.7T UAS IFCsbroken down into two major categories (Standard Airworthiness IFCand Safety of Flight IFC). Engineering requirements are tailored based on system complexity, desired usage, expendability, etc. External mitigations (e.g., airspace restrictions) are typically added to the IFC to alleviate/limit risk to third parties Not all UAS have to be airworthy, but all must be safe for flight!(expendable UA may not have to be airworthy to same threshold commonly associated with non-expendable UAS or manned aircraft) If probability of loss is in line with expendability of the UAS, and the level of risk associated with personnel, property, equipment, and environment has been identified and accepted by appropriate authorities, a safety of flight (SOF) IFC can be granted

(U//FOUO) USAF Operating Next-Generation Remotely Piloted Aircraft for Irregular Warfare
December 13, 2011 in U.S. Air Force

United States Air Force Scientific Advisory Board Report on Operating Next-Generation Remotely Piloted Aircraft for Irregular Warfare

110 pages Distribution Statement D For Official Use Only April 2011 3.6 MB

The United States Air Force has long envisioned a strategic role for remotely piloted and autonomous aircraft. As early as May 1896, Samuel Pierpont Langley developed an unpiloted heavier-than-air vehicle which flew over the Potomac River. On V-J Day in August 1945, General Hap Arnold, US Army Air Forces, observed: We have just won a war with a lot of heroes flying around in planes. The next war may be fought by airplanes with no men in them at all Take everything youve learned about aviation in war, throw it out of the window, and lets go to work on tomorrows aviation. It will be different from anything the world has ever seen. Since these early days, extended range, persistence, precision, and stealth have characterized remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) advancements. RPAs have been employed in multiple combat

roles and increasingly contested environments. This year, for the first time in history, the Presidents budget proposed a larger investment in RPAs than manned aircraft. A seemingly insatiable operational appetite for RPAs, however, has led to an Air Force manning bottleneck. This is exacerbated by a lack of common ground stations, unsatisfactory integration with civilian and international airspace, and vulnerabilities in communications and command and control links. Further complicating efforts, yet essential in irregular warfare, are directives to minimize civilian casualties. General David Petraeus sees this need as a direct way to support a key center of gravity: We must fight the insurgents, and will use the tools at our disposal to both defeat the enemy and protect our forces. But we will not win based on the number of Taliban we kill, but instead on our ability to separate insurgents from the center of gravity the people Our Panel conducted an extensive set of visits and received numerous briefings from a wide range of key stakeholders in government, industry, and academia. Taking a human-centered, evidence-based approach, our study seeks to address operational challenges as well as point to new opportunities for future RPAs. That RPAs will be a foundational element of the Air Forces force structure is no longer debatable. The real question is how to maximize their current and future potential. Our intention is that this study will help provide both vector and thrust in how to do so in the irregular warfare context, as well as other applications. RPAs are revolutionary surveillance and weapons delivery systems changing the way the Air Force builds situation awareness and engages enemy forces but their full potential has yet to be realized. To begin to address this issue, the Air Force initiated this study to review the state-ofthe-art in RPA operations, focusing on control and connectivity in an irregular warfare (IW) environment. The Panel was specifically tasked to identify RPA architectures and operational concepts centered on human-systems integration, distributed systems operations, and effective command and control a cluster of concepts and technologies we subsequently labeled as mission management enablers. The Panel was also tasked to recommend mid- to far-term S&T development roadmaps for advancing these technologies to improve the flexibility and capability of RPA operations. The study terms of reference (TOR) identified a number of core issues which were further articulated by the Study Panel to include: 1. Issue #1: Manning and personnel shortfalls are concerns in RPA deployment. Exploiters represent the largest manning dependency (39 percent), exacerbated by expected significant exploiter growth from new sensor suites (e.g., ARGUS-IS, Gorgon Stare). Current sensors (e.g., Constant Hawk and Angel Fire) and expected sensors (e.g., ARGUS-IS) produce data at rates of 10 to over 1000 times projected communications data transmission capacities, and will far exceed human analytic capacity. 2. Issue #2: Manually intensive airspace management and integration requiring exclusion zones and Certificates of Authorization (COAs) make inefficient use of national and international airspace, will not scale to accommodate future RPA growth, hampers manned/unmanned integration, and presents special challenges for small RPAs.

3. Issue #3: Minimizing collateral damage (CD) and fratricide is not a requirement unique to RPA strike operations. For manned and unmanned platforms, the lack of positive ID (PID) and tactical patience are the most significant causes of civilian casualties (CIVCAS) in current conflicts (8 percent CIVCAS compared with 66 percent caused by insurgents). Persistence; upclose access; highresolution intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR); improved situation awareness; and improved mission management will permit RPAs to minimize CD/fratricide. Small-focused lethality munitions and non-lethal options for RPAs promise to further minimize CD and CIVCAS (e.g., as low as 5 percent). 4. Issue #4: In spite of current low RPA losses, inexpensive physical threats (e.g., MANPADS, low-end SAMs, air-to-air missiles) and electronic threats (e.g., acoustic detectors, low cost acquisition radars, jammers) threaten future operations. 2.3 Issue (3): Minimizing Collateral Damage/Fratricide A third issue identified by the Study Panel was collateral damage/fratricide (Figure 2-8). RPAs, originally developed for ISR operations, have become important weapons platforms for tactical and special strike missions in IW. Their expanded use in CAS missions in the future requires technology improvements for mission management to minimize fratricide, collateral damage (CD), and civilian casualties (CIVCAS). In IW, success requires winning the hearts and minds of the population in the face of an adaptable and agile adversary hiding amongst them. A missile fired (e.g. Hellfire missile) from a RPA is no different from a Hellfire missile fired from other platforms like the AH-64 Apache. Causing collateral damage is not an issue unique to RPAs. Data obtained from the Afghanistan AOR17 confirms that insurgents have caused approximately two thirds of CIVCAS. The exact number of CIVCAS caused by US forces was not reported, but an estimate from available data suggests the figure to be less than 10 percent. Of these CIVCAS, approximately half were caused by air-to-ground munitions, but the role of RPAs in these CIVCAS was also not reported. In the majority of these CIVCAS, inadequate acquisition and maintenance of positive target identification (PID) was the primary cause, and the ability to provide tactical patience during operations would have improved mission success and minimized CIVCAS. In an article by the Washington Post, it was reported that within a recent 15-month period, the CIA conducted 70 RPA strikes using the low collateral damage focused lethality Scorpion weapon, killing 400 terrorists and insurgents while causing 20 CIVCAS. This CIVCAS figure was based on the use of RPAs to conduct pre-strike ISR and post-strike battle damage assessments. Because of precision targeting and focused lethality, CIVCAS is now primarily dependent on the human intelligence and situation awareness upon which the targeting decision is based. 3.3.4 Encryption and Potential C2 Link Vulnerabilities Historically, sensor/data downlinks for some RPAs have not been encrypted or obfuscated. Unencrypted sensor data (e.g., FMV) is beneficial because the downlink is used to feed ROVER

systems used by Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (JTAC) and other ground personnel, including uncleared coalition members and contractors. This is a life-saving capability. Nevertheless, not protecting against interception of sensor data has been criticized. Fixing this security issue by mandating NSA Type 1 encryption is likely to lead to an unacceptable key management burden because of the large number of users of RPA data that have a wide variety of access rights. However, commercial-grade, NSA-approved cryptography is available (Suite B). Commercial cryptography of this kind does not require the same degree of rigor in handling key material and encryption devices, and is not limited in operation to cleared personnel. There is relevant Department of Defense (DOD) activity in this general area. Encryption has generally been used on C2 messages because the risks associated with compromise are higher (loss of the vehicle), and there is a greatly reduced need for sharing of the C2 data as compared with sensor data. However, crypto issues will likely be exacerbated when doing coalition/joint swarming across platforms that require shared C2 across security domains a capability that is desired to fully exploit the potential of networked RPA operations.

Drones for urban warfare


Manufacturers are targeting U.S. police forces for sales, as drones move from the Middle East to Main Street
By Jefferson Morley

(Credit: romakoma via Shutterstock/Aurora Flight Sciences/Benjamin Wheelock)

In November 2010, a police lieutenant from Parma, Ohio, asked Vanguard Defense Industries if the Texas-based drone manufacturer could mount a grenade launcher and/or 12-gauge shotgun on its ShadowHawk drone for U.S. law enforcement agencies. The answer was yes. Last month, police officers from 10 public safety departments around the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area gathered at an airfield in southern Maryland to view a demonstration of a camera-equipped aerial drone first developed for military use that flies at speeds up to 20 knots or hovers for as long as an hour. And in late March, South Korean police and military flew a Canadian-designed drone as part of advance security preparations for the Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul where protesters clashed with police. In short, the business of marketing drones to law enforcement is booming. Now that Congress has ordered the Federal Aviation Administration to open up U.S. airspace to unmanned vehicles, the aerial surveillance technology first developed in the battle space of Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan is fueling a burgeoning market in North America. And even though theyre moving from war zones to American markets, the language of combat and conflict remains an important part of their sales pitch a fact that ought to concern citizens worried about the privacy implications of domestic drones. As part of the push to increase uses of civilian drones, the Wall Street Journal reported last week, nearly 50 companies are developing some 150 different systems, ranging from miniature models to those with wingspans comparable to airliners. Law enforcement and public safety agencies are a prime target of this industry, which some predict will have $6 billion in U.S. sales by 2016. Altogether, the drone industrys lobbying group, Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, claims 507 corporate members in 55 countries. The industry proved its clout in February when Congress mandated the FAA open U.S. airspace to drones starting this year. According to the AUVSIs annual report, the group was responsible for the legislative language ordering the FAA to expedite the applications of qualified public safety agencies seeking to fly drones weighing less than 4.4 pounds this year. Larger drones will be eligible to fly in U.S. airspace by 2015. Perhaps the most prominent firm in the U.S. drone market is Vanguard Defense Industries in Texas, which sold a $275,000 drone called the ShadowHawk to the Montgomery County Sheriffs Office in Texas last year. The company is run by CEO Michael Buscher, a 24-year veteran of U.S. Army Special Operations. In his LinkedIn profile, Buscher says that VDI offers technology that will dramatically extend U.S. national security capabilities. Uniquely among U.S. manufacturers, VDI touts its ability to weaponize drones for local police departments. If you think weaponized unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are still too new to combat zones for law enforcement to consider them for domestic use, think again, said the editors of Special Weapons for Military and Police in February:

The Kevlar fuel tank mounted beneath the ShadowHawk allows it to stay in the air long enough to provide complete surveillance of an area and engage suspects with buckshot, tear gas, grenades and less-lethal capabilities. Vanguard has touted the weaponized ShadowHawk to police departments in Ohio and Illinois, according to emails published online by the hackers collective AntiSec. The group hacked the email account of Richard Garcia, a VDI vice president and a former FBI agent, with the stated goal of causing embarrassment and disruption to the company. (VDI says a group of British hackers arrested in England were responsible for the hacking. VDI did not respond to a request for comment.) Other drone manufacturers arent quite as open about the machines weaponization capabilities. Three Israeli drone manufacturers have targeted the homeland security market, which seems to fall somewhere between combat and law enforcement. Israeli Aerospace Industries, which has an office in Arlington, Va., says its Ghost drone is uniquely designed to support urban warfare ISR [Intelligence, Search, Reconnaissance] missions. A video touts the Ghosts ability to conduct day and nighttime operations silently. IAI did not respond to request for comment. BlueBird Aero Systems, also based in Israel, boasts in a promotional video that it is leveraging military UAS [unmanned aviation systems] know-how and innovative approaches to the military, homeland security and civilian markets. The company says its MicroB drone can be used for urban environment monitoring for homeland security and law enforcement. The two-pound craft can be autonomously launched within seconds even in a crowded urban environment, and provides up to one hour of real-time, enhanced visual intelligence of stringent situations. Military expertise is part of the firms pitch to homeland security and law enforcement customers. BlueBird says its leadership is comprised of high-ranking military veterans as well as experts of the defense and security industries in both Israel and North America. Aeronautics, another Israeli drone manufacturer, touts an advisory committee that includes a former chief of staff of the Israeli Defense Forces. Major defense contractors are also beginning to move into the U.S. domestic market. Jeff Brody, a vice president of AAI, a Maryland-based division of Textron that supplies unmanned aviation systems to the Pentagon, says there is pent-up demand and an insatiable desire for the FAA to clarify the rules. While AAI has talked to law enforcement agencies about its products, Brody said the company needs to see new FAA regulations before it can modify war-zone drones for domestic use. Other Pentagon contractors are already marketing to U.S. public safety agencies. Insitu, a Washington state-based subsidiary of Boeing, touts its Inceptor drone as an all-weather instantaneous eye in the sky for U.S. police, fire and rescue workers. The Virginia-based Aurora Flight Sciences offers the Skate drone with three full-motion video cameras for police departments looking to conduct search and rescue operations and perform accident investigations. BAE Systems, another Pentagon contractor, says it has tested a small drone for

civil use but a spokesman declined to answer questions about its other products for the domestic market. With 56 domestic government agencies now authorized by the FAA to fly drones in U.S. airspace, law enforcement is leading the way in the adoption of unmanned vehicles. According to documents published last week by Electronic Frontier Foundation, 22 of the authorized agencies are primarily law enforcement departments, while another 24 entities (mainly universities) have law enforcement functions under them. Among the domestic users are the Department of Homeland Security, which flies a fleet of nine drones over the countrys northern and southern borders, and the FBI. A Bureau spokesman declined to comment on the nature and purpose of the FBIs drones saying that he could not discuss investigative techniques. While industry spokesmen say existing laws will adequately protect civil liberties and privacy, Congress held no hearings on the implications of domestic drones, and a wide range of opponents insist the drones pose a threat to privacy. In Washington, activist groups Code Pink, Reprieve and the Center for Constitutional Rights are holding a drone summit this week, declaring it is time to organize to end current abuses and to prevent the potentially widespread misuse both overseas and here at home. The FAA has the opportunity and the responsibility to ensure that the privacy of individuals is protected and that the public is fully informed about who is using drones in public airspace and why, said U.S. Reps. Ed Markey, D-Mass., and Joe Barton, R-Texas, in a letter to the FAA last week. How will the public be notified about when and where drones are used, who will operate the drones, what data will be collected, how the data will be used, how the data will be retained and who will have access to the date? they asked. Carl Schaefer , director of small UAS products for Aurora Flight Sciences, in Manassas, Va., says he isnt worried. My personal view is that complaints about privacy are overblown and unfounded, he said in a telephone interview. Police departments want UAVs to increase awareness more quickly whether at a crime scene or a hostage situation. These guys want to see around a corner. They arent peering in windows. Weve never got a request to do that kind of stuff and weve had very extensive discussions with potential customers. Ian McDonald, a vice president at Aeryon Labs, a Canadian unmanned vehicle firm, discounted concerns about the weaponization of drones. Thats not a request weve had from our customers, he said. Aeryons customers, which include Canadian law enforcement agencies, want a close-in aerial perspective and to remove officers or responders from danger.

But with a technology born in combat zones and marketed by defense contractors from countries that dont have baseline privacy laws (U.S.) or have poor human rights records justified in the name of homeland security (Israel), the American public may want more explicit guarantees that they will be the beneficiaries, not the target, of drones over America.

Tuesday, Apr 10, 2012 04:45 AM MST

The drones are coming to America


Congress has opened up U.S. airspace to the drone industry -- and your privacy is about to be at risk
By Jefferson Morley

(Credit: Salon)

A drone is probably heading toward your personal airspace soon. With Congress requiring the Federal Aviation Administration to simplify and expedite drone applications from U.S. police departments by May 15, industry and watchdog groups agree: It wont be long before cops and first responders put them into action. Thanks to a law passed without much public debate in March, the FAA must allow law enforcement agencies to operate small drones (i.e., less than 4.4 pounds) at altitudes of less than 400 feet. The demand is huge, says Catherine Crump, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union. Michael Toscano, president of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems

International, a trade group, says there are nearly 19,000 law enforcement entities in the United States, of which only 300 now have aerial surveillance capacities. Those departments have helicopters which cost about $1,500 an hour to operate, Toscano says. You can fly these drones for maybe less than $50 hour. A lot of smaller departments can now afford this technology. It is easy to imagine the benefits of having an eye in the sky. You dont have to call off a search for a missing person because of darkness or inclement weather, Toscano says. Using airborne sensors, a drone could pinpoint the most dangerous areas of a fire for firefighters on the ground. The downside is obvious too. Drones are mostly known for their use in war zones in Iraq and Afghanistan and in the controversial targeted killing of overseas U.S. citizens allegedly involved in terrorism. The introduction of surveillance drones into U.S. airspace signals an unprecedented conflation of homeland security, counterterrorism and domestic law enforcement, a combination that is galvanizing civil society activists. Technology developed for attacking armed enemies abroad is being repurposed for enforcing the law at home without any new safeguards for privacy and civil liberties. Domestic drones can engage in constant surveillance from the sky, which the Supreme Court has ruled does not constitute a violation of the Fourth Amendment strictures against unreasonable search. Photographs of political demonstrators could be fed into facial recognition software on a scale previously unimaginable. Drones can also be weaponized with tear gas or tasers for remote crowd control. Michael Buscher, president of Vanguard Defense Industries, a drone manufacturer in Texas, told the Daily that police drones could have rubber buckshot better available for large crowd dispersal. With these aircraft hovering above our heads, privacy is at risk as drone technology has far outpaced the development of corresponding regulatory laws, says Eugene Chow, editor of the Homeland Security News wire. The ACLUs Crump adds: Theres no federal law that controls the use of data [collected via drones]. The controlling law [for data] would probably be the state equivalents of the Privacy Act, says Harley Geiger of the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) in Washington. These are very skimpy protections. Part of the reason is the courts have said we have no expectation of privacy if we are standing in a public place or in a place that is observable from a public place. For a drone hovering at 400 or 500 feet, the airspace is considered public space. So if there is a camera up there that can observe you, you have no reasonable expectation of privacy. Its a completely outdated understanding of privacy. Toscano says the drone industry thinks existing laws are sufficient: We believe that your Fourth Amendment rights are protected. There are laws in place for what you can and cannot do with a drone.

The acquisition of more systems The opening of domestic airspace to drones has been driven by industry and the Pentagon without much attention to privacy and civil liberties issues. The drones, first developed in the 1990s, became popular with U.S. military commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan as a way of targeting enemies without risking U.S. soldiers. As those wars wind down, the Pentagon is looking to expand their use outside of war theaters. The stuff from Afghanistan is going to come back, Steve Pennington, the Air Forces director of ranges, bases and airspace, said at a drone conference in February, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Department of Defense doesnt want a segregated environment for operating drones. We want a fully integrated environment. The integration of drones into U.S. airspace has already begun with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency of the Department of Homeland Security, now operating nine drones from sites along the countrys northern and southern borders, according to director Michael Kostelnik, a retired Air Force general. The CPB shares information with Immigration Customs Enforcement and other law enforcement agencies, he said in an interview. With the emergence of the Unmanned Systems Caucus on Capitol Hill, domestic drones are now backed by the proverbial iron triangle of Washington policymaking: congressional committees, executive branch agencies and the private sector. The drone caucus, a group of 53 representatives, 16 of whom come from districts in Southern California and Texas where drone contractors are concentrated, led the push to force the FAA to open the airspace to law enforcement immediately and to the commercial drones by 2015. The caucus defines its mission as educating Congress and the public on the strategic, tactical, and scientific value of unmanned systems and to actively supporting further development and acquisition of more systems. The caucus enjoys the backing of the defense industry. The co-chairs of the caucus, Reps. Buck McKeon, R-Calif., and Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, received $64,000 and $7,400, respectively, from General Atomics, the firm that developed the first military drones, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. So far during the 2012 campaign cycle the General Atomics PAC has contributed $68,500 to 15 drone caucus members, reports the Texas Independent. The caucus, in turn, works closely with the drone industry, says Toscano of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International. The only changes made to the [unmanned aviation systems] section of the House FAA bill were made at the request of AUVSI, according to a PowerPoint presentation made by Toscano and obtained by Republic Report. Our suggestions were often taken word-for-word, Toscano boasted at the time, a claim he repeated in a phone interview. And the industry is counting on government agencies to fund the growth of the drone market. For example, Vanguard Defense Industries in Texas advises police departments to obtain Homeland Security funding for the purchase of drones. Vanguard says it helped law enforcement officials in Montgomery County, north of Dallas, obtain money for a drone under the Homeland Security Grant Program, which funds strategies to address the identified planning, organization,

equipment, training, and exercise needed to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from acts of terrorism and other catastrophic events. The open-ended justification of domestic surveillance as homeland security is triggering alarm among activists. Knowdrones.com seeks an international ban on weaponized drones and surveillance drones. Code Pink and the Center for Constitutional Rights are sponsoring a Drone Summit in Washington later this month. What we have to worry about is closed circuit television or a Trafficam on steroids in which law enforcement can watch everything that is going on in minute detail, says Geiger. In the name of public safety, there are lots of people who would be more than happy to put a system like that in the air now. The emerging drone market points up the need for a comprehensive privacy law like those of other industrial countries, Geiger says. If we cannot get baseline privacy legislation, we will need legislation specific to the FAA. As first steps, he says CDT favors banning weaponization of domestic drones and requiring the FAA to conduct a Privacy Impact Statement. So far Congress has shown no interest in such measures and indeed has barred the FAA from considering any factors other than safety in opening up domestic airspace to drones. The law is playing catch-up to a revolutionary technology. How long will it be before there are enough drones in the sky that the general population starts to notice? asks Geiger. There will be thousands of them of them in five years.

Jefferson Morley is a staff writer for Salon in Washington and author of the forthcoming book, Snow-Storm in August: Washington City, Francis Scott Key, and the Forgotten Race Riot of 1835 (Nan Talese/Doubleday).

DoD Joint Spectrum Center Predator Drone Frequency Analysis Reports


April 12, 2012 in Department of Defense The following reports from the Department of Defenses Joint Spectrum Center were originally published in April 2010 by a small blog called DoD Leaks. The blog published less than a dozen documents over a two month span and then ceased all activity. The blogs description states that it was created in response to Cryptomes call for more publication of for official use only documents that are available in the public sphere. These documents relate to frequency

allocation and electromagnetic interference tests conducted in relation to datalinks used by Predator drones.
ELECTROMAGNETIC COMPATIBILITY ANALYSIS OF THE PREDATOR UAV LINE-OFSIGHT DATA LINK TERMINAL WITH THE November 50 Download COMMUNICATIONS-ELECTRONICS 2003 pages ENVIRONMENT AT INDIAN SPRINGS AIR FORCE AUXILIARY FIELD PREDATOR UAV C-BAND DATA LINK EMC WITH 5-GHZ CFR 47 PART 15 AND PART 90 DEVICES COMMON DATA LINK EMC ANALYSIS INDIAN SPRINGS C-BAND LINE-OF-SIGHT FREQUENCY REQUIREMENTS ANALYSIS C-BAND AND Ku-BAND UAV LINE-OF-SIGHT DATA LINK EMC ANALYSIS FOR TWO OPERATIONAL SCENARIOS PREDATOR UAV LINE-OF-SIGHT DATALINK TERMINAL RADIO FREQUENCY TEST REPORT November 30 Download 2003 pages September 59 Download 2004 pages January 2005 October 2004 54 Download pages 35 Download pages

September 44 Download 2004 pages

U.S. Army Europe Unmanned Aircraft System Flight Regulations


September 30, 2011 in U.S. Army

United States Army Europe Unmanned Aircraft System Flight Regulations


Regulation 95-23 41 pages September 3, 2009

This regulation

Provides policy on unmanned aircraft system operations, unmanned aircraft crewmember training and currency requirements, and flight rules. Covers Army unmanned aircraft system general provisions, training, standardization, and management of unmanned aircraft system resources. Must be used with AR 95-23. Applicability. This regulation applies to members of the active Army, Army Reserve, and Army National Guard; and DOD civilians and civilian contractors who provide training on or are involved in the operation, standardization, and maintenance of unmanned aircraft systems. During mobilization, the policy in this regulation may be modified by the proponent. This regulation a. Prescribes policy and procedures for Army unmanned aircraft system (UAS) aircrew training and standardization, and for operating UASs in USEUCOM areas under CG, USAREUR, control. b. Is not intended to be used in place of AR 95-23. The intent of this regulation is to provide additional guidance for UAS operations in USAREUR. When differences between the policy in this regulation and AR 95-23 exist, the more stringent policy will be followed. c. Applies to all Army UASs, including Hunter, Raven, Shadow, and Warrior. Personnel responsible for other military or nonstandard UASs will adhere to all UAS regulations and coordinate with the USAREUR G3 (AEAGC-AV) before using these systems for flight operations.

(U//FOUO) U.S. Army Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (SUAV) Airspace Command and Control (A2C2) Handbook
April 11, 2012 in U.S. Army

LEADERS GUIDE TO A2C2 AT BRIGADE AND BELOW


34 pages For Official Use Only June 2005 4.85 MB

The purpose of this handbook is to enhance understanding of Army airspace command and control (A2C2) to mitigate risks between small unit unmanned aerial vehicles (SUAVs) and rotary wing operations below the coordinating altitude. This handbook provides leaders at the brigade and below with guidelines in the form of airspace coordination techniques and procedures regarding SUAV mission planning and airspace deconfliction.

This handbook is the result of combining information from several sources, including Raven operators currently deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. 2. TYPES OF SEPARATION There are three primary means of maintaining separation between manned and unmanned aircraft: lateral, time, and vertical separation. Beyond the need to ensure physical separation exists, leaders must plan for frequency separation between unmanned vehicles. a. Lateral separation spaces aircraft that may be operating at the same altitude by not having them operate in the same geographic space. This can be done through the assignment of flight corridors, ROA/ROZ, and other graphic control measures such as phase lines and unit boundaries. b. Time separation spaces aircraft that may be operating in the same geographic area or at the same operating altitudes by not allowing them to operate at the same time. Time separation may also be required when aircraft, manned and unmanned, must fly near indirect-fire trajectories or ordnance effects. The timing of surface fires must be coordinated with aircraft routing. This ensures that, even though aircraft and surface fires may occupy the same space, they do not do so at the same time. c. Vertical separation spaces aircraft based on operating altitude or by assigning different operating altitudes to other aircraft that may be working in the same geographic area. Vertical separation is the least preferred method since SUAVs and rotary wing aircraft normally operate from the surface to 500 feet above ground level (AGL).

Drone Collides Over Afghanistan With U.S. Warplane


By Colin Clark Published: August 17, 2011

Washington: A relatively small unmanned aircraft struck a C-130 cargo plane over Afghanistan, injuring no one but raising questions anew about whether drones can fly safely in American airspace.

For more news and information on the swiftly-changing defense industry, please sign up for the AOL Defense newsletter. You can also catch us on Twitter @AOLDefense.

The drone, a Shadow made by a unit of Textron Systems, boasts a maximum operating altitude of about 15,000 feet but usually operates at lower altitudes to perform its tactical reconnaissance mission. No one was injured in the collision, but the C-130 did make an emergency landing, according to the Wall Street Journal, which broke the story. The 12-foot drone went down. No word yet on its condition or whether anyone on the ground was injured. The Shadow was probably flown by an Army or Marine unit. Ironically, the unmanned plane struck the very type of manned plane that usually carries it into action -one of Lockheed Martin's C-130s. Defense companies, eager to expand their market, have pressed the Federal Aviation Administration for years to open U.S. civil airspace to unmanned aircraft.

"The use of unmanned systems and the use manned systems in the same airspace is not going away," Dave Vos, senior director of control technologies at Rockwell Collins, said today at the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International's annual conference. "It is only going to get more prolific" as technology advances. The strike is generating much conversation at the conference, the biggest drone event in the world. The FAA, concerned about drones -- which don't boast Traffic Collision Avoidance Systems such as large airliners use -- has moved slowly and cautiously. "We are going to make sure we are going to guarantee the safety of other pilots and people on the ground," Les Dorr, an FAA spokesman, told AOL Defense. He said that several studies "indicate you could not use TCAS to reliably have other aircraft detect the unmanned aircraft." When I pressed Dorr on the possible significance of the collision to FAA efforts to open the skies, he noted that "there is a world of difference between operations in Afghanistan and those in the U.S." It is, he said, "like comparing apples and Oldsmobiles." "Wholesale integration" of unmanned aircraft into U.S. airspace "is a number of years away," Dorr said. However, the agency plans to publish a draft rule "late this fall" for rules governing "small unmanned aircraft" of less than 55 pounds. Today, a drone operator must get a special experimental certificate to fly in U.S. civil airspace. As of a year ago, less than 80 such permits had been granted. Military or other government flights can get a waiver to operate for a set period of time in a carefully defined area. As the FAA website notes: "Due to the UASs inability to comply with 'sense and avoid' rules, a ground observer or an accompanying "chase" aircraft must maintain visual contact with the UAS and serve as its 'eyes' when operating outside of airspace that is restricted from other users."

Traffic collision avoidance system


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (Redirected from TCAS) Jump to: navigation, search

Traffic collision avoidance system

TCAS and IVSI cockpit display (monochrome)

TCAS and EHSI cockpit display (color)

A traffic collision avoidance system or traffic alert and collision avoidance system (both abbreviated as TCAS) is an aircraft collision avoidance system designed to reduce the incidence of mid-air collisions between aircraft. It monitors the airspace around an aircraft for other aircraft equipped with a corresponding active transponder, independent of air traffic control, and warns pilots of the presence of other transponder-equipped aircraft which may present a threat of mid-

air collision (MAC). It is a type of airborne collision avoidance system mandated by the International Civil Aviation Organization to be fitted to all aircraft with a maximum take-off mass (MTOM) of over 5700 kg (12,586 lbs) or authorized to carry more than 19 passengers. Official definition from PANS-ATM (Nov 2007): ACAS / TCAS is an aircraft system based on secondary surveillance radar (SSR) transponder signals, which operates independently of ground-based equipment to provide advice to the pilot on potential conflicting aircraft that are equipped with SSR transponders. In modern glass cockpit aircraft, the TCAS display may be integrated in the Navigation Display (ND) or Electronic Horizontal Situation Indicator (EHSI); in older glass cockpit aircraft and those with mechanical instrumentation, such an integrated TCAS display may replace the mechanical Vertical Speed Indicator (which indicates the rate with which the aircraft is descending or climbing).

Contents
[hide]

1 Impetus for a collision prevention system 2 TCAS basics o 2.1 System description o 2.2 System components 3 TCAS operation o 3.1 TCAS operation modes o 3.2 TCAS alerts o 3.3 Types of traffic and resolution advisories o 3.4 Pilot/aircrew interaction during a TCAS event 4 Safety aspects of TCAS 5 Relationship to automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) 6 Drawbacks to TCAS and ADS-B 7 Versions of TCAS o 7.1 Passive o 7.2 TCAS I o 7.3 TCAS II o 7.4 TCAS III o 7.5 TCAS IV 8 Current implementation o 8.1 Current TCAS Limitations o 8.2 Regulatory situation around the world 9 See also 10 References 11 External links

[edit] Impetus for a collision prevention system

Research into collision avoidance systems has been ongoing since at least the 1950s. ICAO and aviation authorities such as the Federal Aviation Administration were spurred into action after several major mid-air collisions involving great loss of life.[1][2] Some of these mid-air accidents include:

Grand Canyon midair collision in 1956; The New York air disaster in 1960; The Asheville midair collision in 1967; The Zagreb mid-air collision in 1976; PSA Flight 182, a Boeing 727 which collided with a Cessna 172 in 1978; The Ukraine Aeroflot mid-air collision, between two Tupolev Tu-134 in 1979; Aeromxico Flight 498, a 1986 collision similar to PSA Flight 182, which finally spurred the US Congress and other regulatory bodies into action and led to mandatory collision avoidance equipment. Chakri Dadri midair collision over a town near New Delhi, India in 1996;

The implementation of TCAS added a safety barrier to help prevent mid-air collisions. However, further study, refinements, training and regulatory measures were still required, because the limitations and misuse of the system still resulted in other incidents and fatal accidents, which include:

The Japan Airlines near-miss incident in 2001; The berlingen mid-air collision, between a Boeing 757 and a Tupolev Tu-154 in 2002, where the Tupolev pilots declined to follow their TCAS resolution advisory (RA), instead following the directions of the air traffic controller, while the Boeing pilots followed their TCAS RA. having no ATC instruction. By the time the crews of the two planes actually saw each other, it was too late and the planes collided, killing 71; The Gol Flight 1907 collision with an Embraer Legacy 600 in 2006;

For more examples, see Category:Mid-air collisions.

[edit] TCAS basics


[edit] System description

TCAS involves communication between all aircraft equipped with an appropriate transponder (provided the transponder is enabled and set up properly). Each TCAS-equipped aircraft interrogates all other aircraft in a determined range about their position (via the 1,030 MHz radio frequency), and all other aircraft reply to other interrogations (via 1,090 MHz). This interrogation-and-response cycle may occur several times per second.[1][2] The TCAS system builds a three dimensional map of aircraft in the airspace, incorporating their range (garnered from the interrogation and response round trip time), altitude (as reported by the interrogated aircraft), and bearing (by the directional antenna from the response). Then, by extrapolating current range and altitude difference to anticipated future values, it determines if a potential collision threat exists.

TCAS and its variants are only able to interact with aircraft that have a correctly operating mode C or mode S transponder. A unique 24-bit identifier is assigned to each aircraft that has a mode S transponder Identification friend or foe#Modes. The next step beyond identifying potential collisions is automatically negotiating a mutual avoidance maneuver (currently, maneuvers are restricted to changes in altitude and modification of climb/sink rates) between the two (or more) conflicting aircraft. These avoidance maneuvers are communicated to the flight crew by a cockpit display and by synthesized voice instructions.[1][2] A protected volume of airspace surrounds each TCAS equipped aircraft. The size of the protected volume depends on the altitude, speed, and heading of the aircraft involved in the encounter. The illustration below gives an example of a typical TCAS protection volume.

[edit] System components

A TCAS installation consists of the following components:[1][2]


TCAS computer unit

Performs airspace surveillance, intruder tracking, its own aircraft altitude tracking, threat detection, RA maneuver determination and selection, and generation of advisories. The TCAS Processor uses pressure altitude, radar altitude, and discrete aircraft status inputs from its own aircraft to control the collision avoidance logic parameters that determine the protection volume around the TCAS aircraft. Antennas The antennas used by TCAS II include a directional antenna that is mounted on the top of the aircraft and either an omnidirectional or a directional antenna mounted on the bottom of the aircraft. Most installations use the optional directional antenna on the bottom of the aircraft. In addition to the two TCAS antennas, two antennas are also required for the Mode S transponder. One antenna is mounted on the top of the aircraft while the other is mounted on the bottom. These antennas enable the Mode S transponder to receive interrogations at 1030 MHz and reply to the received interrogations at 1090 MHz. Cockpit presentation The TCAS interface with the pilots is provided by two displays: the traffic display and the RA display. These two displays can be implemented in a number of ways, including displays that incorporate both displays into a single, physical unit. Regardless of the implementation, the information displayed is identical. The standards for both the traffic display and the RA display are defined in DO-185A.[3]

[edit] TCAS operation


The following section describes the TCAS operation based on TCAS II, since this is the version that has been adopted as an international standard (ACAS II) by ICAO and aviation authorities worldwide.[1][2]
[edit] TCAS operation modes

TCAS II can be currently operated in the following modes:[1][2]


Stand-by Power is applied to the TCAS Processor and the mode S transponder, but TCAS does not issue any interrogations and the transponder will reply to only discrete interrogations. Transponder The mode S transponder is fully operational and will reply to all appropriate ground and TCAS interrogations. TCAS remains in stand-by. Traffic advisories only

The mode S transponder is fully operational. TCAS will operate normally and issue the appropriate interrogations and perform all tracking functions. However, TCAS will only issue traffic advisories (TA), and the resolution advisories (RA) will be inhibited. Automatic (traffic/resolution advisories) The mode S transponder is fully operational. TCAS will operate normally and issue the appropriate interrogations and perform all tracking functions. TCAS will issue traffic advisories (TA) and resolution advisories (RA), when appropriate.

TCAS works in a coordinated manner, so when an RA is issued to conflicting aircraft, a required action (i.e., Climb. Climb.) has to be immediately performed by one of the aircraft, while the other one receives a similar RA in the opposite direction (i.e., Descend. Descend.).
[edit] TCAS alerts

TCAS II typical envelope

TCAS II types of RA

TCAS II issues the following types of aural annunciations:

Traffic advisory (TA) Resolution advisory (RA) Clear of conflict

When a TA is issued, pilots are instructed to initiate a visual search for the traffic causing the TA. If the traffic is visually acquired, pilots are instructed to maintain visual separation from the traffic. The pilot training programs also indicate that no horizontal maneuvers are to be made based solely on information shown on the traffic display. Slight adjustments in vertical speed while climbing or descending, or slight adjustments in airspeed while still complying with the ATC clearance are acceptable.[4] When an RA is issued, pilots are expected to respond immediately to the RA unless doing so would jeopardize the safe operation of the flight. This means that aircraft will at times have to manoeuver contrary to ATC instructions or disregard ATC instructions. In these cases, the controller is no longer responsible for separation of the aircraft involved in the RA until the conflict is terminated. On the other hand, ATC can potentially interfere with the pilots response to RAs. If a conflicting ATC instruction coincides with an RA, the pilot may assume that ATC is fully aware of the situation and is providing the better resolution. But in reality ATC is not aware of the RA until the RA is reported by the pilot. Once the RA is reported by the pilot, ATC is required not to attempt to modify the flight path of the aircraft involved in the encounter. Hence, the pilot is expected to follow the RA but in practice this does not yet always happen. Some States have implemented RA downlink which provides air traffic controllers with information about RAs posted in the cockpit obtained via Mode S radars. Currently, there are no ICAO provisions concerning the use of RA downlink by air traffic controllers. The following points receive emphasis during pilot training:

Do not manoeuver in a direction opposite to that indicated by the RA because this may result in a collision. Inform the controller of the RA as soon as permitted by flight crew workload after responding to the RA. There is no requirement to make this notification prior to initiating the RA response. Be alert for the removal of RAs or the weakening of RAs so that deviations from a cleared altitude are minimized. If possible, comply with the controllers clearance, e.g. turn to intercept an airway or localizer, at the same time as responding to an RA. When the RA event is completed, promptly return to the previous ATC clearance or instruction or comply with a revised ATC clearance or instruction.[4]

[edit] Types of traffic and resolution advisories Type TA Text Traffic; traffic. Meaning Intruder near both horizontally and Required action[1][2][5] Attempt visual contact, and be

vertically. RA RA RA RA RA RA RA Climb; climb. Descend. Descend. Increase climb. Increase descent. Reduce climb. Reduce descent. Climb; climb now. Descend; descend now. Maintain vertical speed; maintain. Adjust vertical speed; adjust. Monitor vertical speed. Crossing. Intruder will pass below Intruder will pass above. Intruder will pass just below Intruder will pass just above. Intruder is probably well below. Intruder is probably well above.

prepared to maneuver if an RA occurs. Begin climbing at 15002000 ft/min Begin descending at 15002000 ft/min Climb at 2500 3000 ft/min. Descend at 2500 3000 ft/min. Climb at a slower rate. Descend at a slower rate.

Intruder that was passing above, will Change from a descent to a climb. now pass below. Intruder that was passing below, will Change from a climb to a descent. now pass above. Intruder will be avoided if vertical rate is maintained. Intruder considerably away, or weakening of initial RA. Intruder ahead in level flight, above or below. Passing through the intruder's level. Usually added to any other RA. Intruder is no longer a threat. Maintain current vertical rate.

RA

RA

RA

Begin to level off.

RA

Remain in level flight. Proceed according to the associated RA. Return promptly to previous ATC clearance.

RA

CC

Clear of conflict.

[edit] Pilot/aircrew interaction during a TCAS event TCAS event interaction[4] Aircrew Traffic advisory (TA) Shall not manoeuver their aircraft in Remains responsible for ATC separation Controller

response to traffic advisories (TAs) only Should prepare for appropriate action if an If requested by the aircrew, shall give traffic RA occurs; but as far as practicable, pilots information should not request traffic information Resolution advisory (RA) Shall respond immediately and manoeuver Shall not attempt to modify the flight path of an as indicated, unless doing so would aircraft responding to an RA jeopardize the safety of the airplane Shall follow the RA even if there is a conflict Shall not issue any clearance or instruction to the between the RA and an Air Traffic Control aircraft involved until the pilot reports returning to the (ATC) instruction to manoeuver terms of the assigned ATC clearance or instruction Shall never manoeuver in the opposite Shall acknowledge the report by using the phrase sense to an RA, nor maintain a vertical rate "ROGER" in the opposite sense to an RA When deviating from an air traffic control instruction or clearance in response to any RA, shall:

If requested by the aircrew, shall give traffic information

As soon as permitted by flight crew workload, notify the appropriate ATC unit of the deviation. Immediately inform ATC when they are unable to comply with a clearance or instruction that conflicts with an RA.

Shall promptly comply with any subsequent Ceases to be responsible for providing separation between that aircraft and any other aircraft affected as RAs issued by TCAS a direct consequence of the manoeuver induced by the RA, as long as the pilot reported the TCAS RA. Shall limit the alterations of the flight path to the minimum extent necessary to comply with the resolution advisories Clear of conflict (CC) Shall promptly return to the terms of the Shall resume responsibility for providing separation for

ATC instruction or clearance when the conflict is resolved

all the affected aircraft when he acknowledges:

A report from the pilot that the aircraft is resuming the assigned ATC clearance or instruction and issues an alternative clearance or instruction which is acknowledged by the pilot A report from the pilot that the aircraft has resumed the assigned ATC clearance or instruction

Shall notify ATC after initiating a return to or resuming the current clearance

[edit] Safety aspects of TCAS


Safety studies on TCAS estimate that the system improves safety in the airspace by a factor of between 3 and 5.[6] However, it is well understood that part of the remaining risk is that TCAS may induce midair collisions: "In particular, it is dependent on the accuracy of the threat aircrafts reported altitude and on the expectation that the threat aircraft will not make an abrupt maneuver that defeats the TCAS Resolution Advisory (RA). The safety study also shows that TCAS II will induce some critical near midair collisions..." (See page 7 of Introduction to TCAS II Version 7 and 7.1 (PDF) in external links below).[1][2] One potential problem with TCAS II is the possibility that a recommended avoidance maneuver might direct the flight crew to descend toward terrain below a safe altitude. Recent requirements for incorporation of ground proximity mitigate this risk. Ground proximity warning alerts have priority in the cockpit over TCAS alerts. Some pilots have been unsure how to act when their aircraft was requested to climb whilst flying at their maximum altitude. The accepted procedure is to follow the climb RA as best as possible, temporarily trading speed for height. The climb RA should quickly finish. In the event of a stall warning, the stall warning would take priority. Both cases have been already addressed by Version 7.0 of TCAS II and are currently handled by a corrective RA together with a visual indication of a green arc in the IVSI display to indicate the safe range for the climb or descent rate. However, it has been found that in some cases these indications could lead to a dangerous situation for the involved aircraft. For example, if a TCAS event occurs when two aircraft are descending one over the other for landing, the aircraft at the lower altitude will first receive a "Descend, descend" RA, and when reaching an extreme low altitude, this will change to a "Adjust Vertical Speed, Adjust" RA, together with a green arc indication directing the pilot to level off the aircraft. This could place the aircraft dangerously

into the path of the intruder above, who is descending to land. A change proposal has been issued to correct this problem.[7]

[edit] Relationship to automatic dependent surveillancebroadcast (ADS-B)


Automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) messages are transmitted from aircraft equipped with suitable transponders, containing information such as identity, location, and velocity. The signals are broadcast on the 1090 MHz radio frequency. ADS-B messages are also carried on a Universal Access Transceiver (UAT) in the 978 MHz band.[8] TCAS equipment which is capable of processing ADS-B messages may use this information to enhance the performance of TCAS, using techniques known as "hybrid surveillance". As currently implemented, hybrid surveillance uses reception of ADS-B messages from an aircraft to reduce the rate at which the TCAS equipment interrogates that aircraft. This reduction in interrogations reduces the use of the 1030/1090 MHz radio channel, and will over time extend the operationally useful life of TCAS technology. The ADS-B messages will also allow low cost (for aircraft) technology to provide real time traffic in the cockpit for small aircraft. Currently UAT based traffic uplinks are provided in Alaska and in regions of the East coast of the USA. Hybrid surveillance does not include the use any of the aircraft flight information in the TCAS conflict detection algorithms; ADS-B is used only to identify aircraft that can safely be interrogated at a lower rate. In the future, prediction capabilities may be improved by using the state vector information present in ADS-B messages. Also, since ADS-B messages can be received at greater range than TCAS normally operates, aircraft can be acquired earlier by the TCAS tracking algorithms. The identity information present in ADS-B messages can be used to label other aircraft on the cockpit display (where present), painting a picture similar to what an air traffic controller would see and improving situational awareness.[9][10]

[edit] Drawbacks to TCAS and ADS-B


The major demonstrated problem of the ADS-B protocol integration is this added verbosity of the extra information transmitted, which is considered unnecessary for collision avoidance purposes. The more data transmitted from one aircraft in accordance with the system design, the lesser the number of aircraft that can participate in the system, due to the fixed and limited channel data bandwidth (1 megabit/second with the 26/64 data bits to packet length bit capacity of the Mode S downlink data format packet). For every Mode S message of 64 bits, the overhead demands 8 for clock sync at the receiver and Mode S packet discovery, 6 for type of Mode S packet, 24 for who it came from. Since that leaves only 26 for information, multiple packets must be used to convey a single message. The ADS-B "fix" proposal is to go to a 128 bit packet, which is not an accepted international standard.[8] Either approach increases channel traffic above the level sustainable for environments such as the Los Angeles Basin.

[edit] Versions of TCAS


[edit] Passive See also: Portable Collision Avoidance System

Collision Avoidance systems which rely on transponder replies triggered by ground and airborne systems are considered passive. Ground and airborne interrogators query nearby transponders for mode C altitude information, which can be monitored by third-party systems for traffic information. Passive systems display traffic similar to TCAS, however generally have a range of less than 7 nautical miles (13 km).[citation needed]
[edit] TCAS I

TCAS I is the first generation of collision avoidance technology. It is cheaper but less capable than the modern TCAS II system, and is mainly intended for general aviation use. TCAS I systems are able to monitor the traffic situation around a plane (to a range of about 40 miles) and offer information on the approximate bearing and altitude of other aircraft. It can also generate collision warnings in the form of a "Traffic Advisory" (TA). The TA warns the pilot that another aircraft is in near vicinity, announcing "Traffic, traffic", but does not offer any suggested remedy; it is up to the pilot to decide what to do, usually with the assistance of Air Traffic Control. When a threat has passed, the system announces "Clear of conflict".[11]
[edit] TCAS II

Change proposal CP112E graphical explanation

Change proposal CP115 graphical explanation

TCAS II is the second and current generation of instrument warning TCAS, used in the majority of commercial aviation aircraft (see table below). It offers all the benefits of TCAS I, but will also offer the pilot direct, vocalized instructions to avoid danger, known as a "Resolution Advisory" (RA). The suggestive action may be "corrective", suggesting the pilot change vertical speed by announcing, "Descend, descend", "Climb, climb" or "Adjust Vertical Speed Adjust" (meaning reduce vertical speed). By contrast a "preventive" RA may be issued which simply warns the pilots not to deviate from their present vertical speed, announcing, "Monitor vertical speed" or "Maintain vertical speed, Maintain". TCAS II systems coordinate their resolution advisories before issuing commands to the pilots, so that if one aircraft is instructed to descend, the other will typically be told to climb maximising the separation between the two aircraft.[1][2] As of 2006, the only implementation that meets the ACAS II standards set by ICAO[12] was Version 7.0 of TCAS II[1], produced by three avionics manufacturers: Rockwell Collins, Honeywell, and ACSS (Aviation Communication & Surveillance Systems; an L-3 Communications and Thales Avionics company). After the berlingen mid-air collision (July 1, 2002), studies have been made to improve TCAS II capabilities. Following extensive Eurocontrol input and pressure, a revised TCAS II Minimum Operational Performance Standards (MOPS) document has been jointly developed by RTCA (Special Committee SC-147[13]) and EUROCAE. As a result, by 2008 the standards for Version 7.1 of TCAS II have been issued[14] and published as RTCA DO-185B[3] (June 2008) and EUROCAE ED-143 (September 2008). TCAS II Version 7.1[2] will be able to issue RA reversals in coordinated encounters, in case one of the aircraft doesn't follow the original RA instructions (Change proposal CP112E).[15] Other changes in this version are the replacement of the ambiguous "Adjust Vertical Speed, Adjust" RA with the "Level off, Level off" RA, to prevent improper response by the pilots (Change proposal CP115).;[16] and the improved handling of corrective/preventive annunciation and removal of green arc display when a positive RA weakens solely due to an extreme low or high altitude condition (1000 feet AGL or below, or near the aircraft top ceiling) to prevent incorrect and possibly dangerous guidance to the pilot (Change proposal CP116).[7][17]

Studies conducted for Eurocontrol, using recently recorded operational data, indicate that currently the probability of a mid-air collision in European airspace is 2.7 x 108 which equates to one in every 3 years. When TCAS II Version 7.1 is implemented, that probability will be reduced by a factor of 4.[17]
[edit] TCAS III

Originally designated TCAS II Enhanced, TCAS III was envisioned as an expansion of the TCAS II concept to include horizontal resolution advisory capability. TCAS III was the "next generation" of collision avoidance technology which underwent development by aviation companies such as Honeywell. TCAS III incorporated technical upgrades to the TCAS II system, and had the capability to offer traffic advisories and resolve traffic conflicts using horizontal as well as vertical manouevring directives to pilots. For instance, in a head-on situation, one aircraft might be directed, "turn right, climb" while the other would be directed "turn right, descend." This would act to further increase the total separation between aircraft, in both horizontal and vertical aspects. Horizontal directives would be useful in a conflict between two aircraft close to the ground where there may be little if any vertical maneuvering space.[18] TCAS III attempts to use the TCAS directional antenna to assign a bearing to other aircraft, and thus be able to generate a horizontal maneuver (e.g. turn left or right). However, it was judged by the industry to be unfeasible due to limitations in the accuracy of the TCAS directional antennas. The directional antennas were judged not to be accurate enough to generate an accurate horizontal-plane position, and thus an accurate horizontal resolution. By 1995, years of testing and analysis determined that the concept was unworkable using available surveillance technology (due to the inadequacy of horizontal position information), and that horizontal RAs were unlikely to be invoked in most encounter geometries. Hence, all work on TCAS III was suspended and there are no plans for its implementation. The concept has later evolved and been replaced by TCAS IV.[19][20]
[edit] TCAS IV

TCAS IV uses additional information encoded by the target aircraft in the Mode S transponder reply (i.e. target encodes its own position into the transponder signal) to generate a horizontal resolution to an RA. Obviously, this requires the target aircraft to have some data link capability at a minimum. In addition, some reliable source of position (such as Inertial Navigation System or GPS) is needed on the target aircraft in order for it to be encoded. TCAS IV has replaced the TCAS III concept by the mid 1990s. One of the results of TCAS III experience has been that the directional antenna used by the TCAS processor to assign a bearing to a received transponder reply is not accurate enough to generate an accurate horizontal position, and thus a safe horizontal resolution. TCAS IV uses additional position information encoded on an air-to-air data link to generate the bearing information, so the accuracy of the directional antenna would not be a factor. TCAS IV development continued for some years, but the appearance of new trends in data link such as Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-B) have pointed out a need to re-

evaluate whether a data link system dedicated to collision avoidance such as TCAS IV should be incorporated into a more generic system of air-to-air data link for additional applications. As a result of these issues, the TCAS IV concept was abandoned as ADS-B development started.[20][21]

[edit] Current implementation


Although the system occasionally suffers from false alarms, pilots are now under strict instructions to regard all TCAS messages as genuine alerts demanding an immediate, highpriority response. Windshear Detection and GPWS alerts and warnings have higher priority than the TCAS. The FAA and most other countries' authorities' rules state that in the case of a conflict between TCAS RA and air traffic control (ATC) instructions, the TCAS RA always takes precedence (this is mainly because of the TCAS-RA inherently possessing a more current and comprehensive picture of the situation than air traffic controllers, whose radar/transponder updates usually happen at a much slower rate than the TCAS interrogations).[1][2] If one aircraft follows a TCAS RA and the other follows conflicting ATC instructions, a collision can occur, such as the July 1, 2002 berlingen disaster. In this mid-air collision, both airplanes were fitted with TCAS II Version 7.0 systems which functioned properly, but one obeyed the TCAS advisory while the other ignored the TCAS and obeyed the controller; both aircraft descended into a fatal collision.[22] This accident could have been prevented if TCAS was able to reverse the original RA for one of the aircraft when it detects that the crew of the other one is not following their original TCAS RA, but conflicting ATC instructions instead. This is one of the features that will be implemented within Version 7.1 of TCAS II.[14][23][24] Implementation of TCAS II Version 7.1 has been originally planned to start between 2009 and 2011 by retrofitting and forward fitting all the TCAS II equipped aircraft, with the goal that by 2014 the version 7.0 will be completely phased out and replaced by version 7.1. The FAA and EASA have already published the TCAS II Version 7.1 Technical Standard Order (TSOC119c[25] and ETSO-C119c,[26] respectively) effective since 2009, based on the RTCA DO185B[3] and EUROCAE ED-143 standards. On 25 September 2009 FAA issued Advisory Circular AC 20-151A[27] providing guidance for obtaining airworthiness approval for TCAS II systems, including the new version 7.1. On 5 October 2009 the Association of European Airlines (AEA) published a Position Paper[28] showing the need to mandate TCAS II Version 7.1 on all aircraft as a matter of priority. On 25 March 2010 the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) published Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) No. 2010-03 pertaining to the introduction of ACAS II software version 7.1.[29] On 14 September 2010 EASA published the Comment Response Document (CRD) to the above mentioned NPA.[30] Separately, a proposal has been made to amend the ICAO standard to require TCAS II Version 7.1 for compliance with ACAS II SARPs. ICAO has circulated an amendment for formal member state agreement which recommends TCAS II Change 7.1 adoption by 1 January 2014 for forward fit and 1 January 2017 for retrofit. Following the feedback and comments from airline operators, EASA has proposed the following dates for the TCAS II Version 7.1 mandate in European airspace: forward fit (for new aircraft) 1 March 2012, retrofit (for existing aircraft) 1 December 2015. These dates are proposed dates,

subject to further regulatory processes, and are not final until the Implementing Rule has been published.[17] Among the system manufacturers, by February 2010 ACSS[31] certified Change 7.1 for their TCAS 2000 and Legacy TCAS II systems,[32] and is currently offering Change 7.1 upgrade for their customers.[33] By June 2010 Honeywell published a white paper with their proposed solutions for TCAS II Version 7.1.[34] Rockwell Collins currently announces that their TCAS-94, TCAS-4000 and TSS-4100 TCAS II compliant systems are software upgradeable to Change 7.1 when available.[35]
[edit] Current TCAS Limitations This unreferenced section requires citations to ensure verifiability.

While the safety benefits of current TCAS implementations are self-evident, the full technical and operational potential of TCAS is not fully exploited due to limitations in current implementations (most of which will need to be addressed in order to further facilitate the design and implementation of Free flight):

TCAS is limited to supporting only vertical separation advisories, more complex traffic conflict scenarios may however be more easily and efficiently remedied by also making use of lateral resolution maneuvers; this applies in particular to traffic conflicts with marginal terrain clearance, or conflict scenarios that are similarly restricted by vertical constraints (e.g. in busy RVSM airspace) ATC can be automatically informed about resolution advisories issued by TCAS only when the aircraft is within an area covered by a Mode S, or an ADS-B monitoring network. In other cases controllers may be unaware of TCAS-based resolution advisories or even issue conflicting instructions (unless ATC is explicitly informed by cockpit crew members about an issued RA during a high-workload situation), which may be a source of confusion for the affected crews while additionally also increasing pilot work load. In May 2009, Luxembourg, Hungary and the Czech Republic show downlinked RAs to controllers. In the above context, TCAS lacks automated facilities to enable pilots to easily report and acknowledge reception of a (mandatory) RA to ATC (and intention to comply with it), so that voice radio is currently the only option to do so, which however additionally increases pilot and ATC workload, as well as frequency congestion during critical situations. In the same context, situational awareness of ATC depends on exact information about aircraft maneuvering, especially during conflict scenarios that may possibly cause or contribute to new conflicts by deviating from planned routing, so automatically visualizing issued resolution advisories and recalculating the traffic situation within the affected sector would obviously help ATC in updating and maintaining situational awareness even during unplanned, ad hoc routing changes induced by separation conflicts. Today's TCAS displays do not provide information about resolution advisories issued to other (conflicting) aircraft, while resolution advisories issued to other aircraft may seem irrelevant to another aircraft, this information would enable and help crews to assess whether other aircraft (conflicting traffic) actually comply with RAs by comparing the actual rate of (altitude) change with the requested rate of change (which could be done automatically and visualized

accordingly by modern avionics), thereby providing crucial realtime information for situational awareness during highly critical situations. TCAS displays today are often primarily range-based, as such they only show the traffic situation within a configurable range of miles/feet, however under certain circumstances a "time-based" representation (i.e. within the next xx minutes) might be more intuitive. Lack of terrain/ground and obstacle awareness (e.g. connection to TAWS, including MSA sector awareness), which might be critical for creating feasible (non-dangerous, in the context of terrain clearance) and useful resolution advisories (i.e. prevent extreme descent instructions if close to terrain), to ensure that TCAS RAs never facilitate CFIT (Controlled Flight into Terrain) scenarios. Aircraft performance in general and current performance capabilities in particular (due to active aircraft configuration) are not taken into account during the negotiation and creation of resolution advisories (as it is the case for differences between different types of aircraft, e.g. turboprop/jet vs. helicopters), so that it is theoretically possible that resolution advisories are issued that demand climb or sink rates outside the normal/safe flight envelope of an aircraft during a certain phase of flight (i.e. due to the aircraft's current configuration). Furthermore, as all traffic is being dealt with equally, there's no distinction taking place between different types of aircraft, neglecting the option of exploiting aircraft-specific (performance) information to issue customized and optimized instructions for any given traffic conflict (i.e. by issuing climb instructions to those aircraft that can provide the best climb rates, while issuing descend instructions to aircraft providing comparatively better sink rates, thereby hopefully maximizing altitude change per time unit, that is separation). As an example, TCAS can order an aircraft to climb when it is already at its service ceiling for its current configuration.[36] TCAS is primarily extrapolation-oriented, as such it is using algorithms trying to approximate 4D trajectory prediction using the "flight path history", in order to assess and evaluate the current traffic situation within an aircraft's proximity, however the degree of data- reliability and usefulness could be significantly improved by enhancing said information with limited access to relevant flight plan information, as well as to relevant ATC instructions to get a more comprehensive picture of other traffic's (route) plans and intentions, so that flight path predictions would no longer be merely based on estimations but rather actual aircraft routing (FMS flight plan) and ATC instructions. If TCAS is modified to use data that is used by other systems, care will be required to ensure that the risks of common failure modes are sufficiently small. TCAS is not fitted to many smaller aircraft mainly due to the high costs involved (between $25,000 and $150,000). Many smaller personal business jets for example, are currently not legally required to have TCAS installed, even though they fly in the same airspace as larger aircraft that are required to have proper TCAS equipment on board. The TCAS system can only perform at its true operational potential once all aircraft in any given airspace have a properly working TCAS unit on board.

[edit] Regulatory situation around the world Jurisdiction (Agency) India(DGCA) Classification of aircraft TCAS mode Date of mandate 31st December,

Aeroplane having a maximum certified passenger TCAS II seating configuration of more than 30 seats or a

maximum payload capacity of more than 3 tons[37] All commercial turbine-powered transport aircraft with more than 30 passenger seats (or MTOW TCAS II above 33,000 lb/15,000 kg) All civil turbine-powered transport aircraft with more than 30 passenger seats (or MTOW above 15,000 kg)[38] All civil turbine powered transport aircraft with more than 19 passenger seats (or MTOW above 5,700 kg)[38]

1998 1 January 1993

USA (FAA)

Europe (EASA)

TCAS II

1 January 2000

Europe (EASA)

ACAS II 1 January (Effectively TCAS 2005 II Version 7.0) 1 January 2000

Australia (CASA)

All commercial turbine powered transport aircraft with more than 30 passenger seats (or MTOW TCAS II [39] above 15,000 kg) All aircraft in Hong Kong with more than 9 passenger seats (or MTOW greater than 5,700 kg)[40] TCAS II Version 7.0 TCAS II Version 7.0

Hong Kong, China (Civil Aviation Department)

1 January 2000 1 January 2008

Brazil (National Civil All transport category aircraft with more than 30 Aviation Agency) passenger seats Peru (Direccin General de Aeronutica Civil) All civil turbine powered transport aircraft with more than 19 passenger seats (or MTOW above 5,700 kg))[41][42]

ACAS II 1 January (Effectively TCAS 2005 II Version 7.0)

[edit] See also


Mid-air collision (MAC) Gol Transportes Areos Flight 1907 1996 Charkhi Dadri mid-air collisionNovember 12, 1996 Bashkirian Airlines Flight 2937July 1, 2002 Bitching Betty Ground Proximity Warning System Portable Collision Avoidance System

[edit] References
1. 2. ^ Introduction to TCAS II Version 7 abcdefghijk ^ Introduction to TCAS II Version 7.1
abcdefghijk

3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42.

^ FAA DO-185 Materials and RTCA SC-147 Activities abc ^ ICAO Document 9863 - Chapter 6 ^ Honeywell TCAS System User Manual ^ ACAS Programme Work Package 1 ab ^ Change proposal CP116 ab ^ ADS-B System Description for the UAT ^ Potential cooperation between TCAS and ASAS ^ Terms of Reference - Future ADS-B / TCAS Relationships ^ FAA TCAS Home Page ^ ACAS II ICAO Provisions ^ SC-147 Terms of Reference - Revision 9 ab ^ Decision criteria for regulatory measures on TCAS II version 7.1 ^ Change proposal CP112E ^ Change proposal CP115 abc ^ EUROCONTROL - TCAS II Version 7.1 ^ Project Report ATC-231 ^ Skybrary ACAS ab ^ TCAS and Transponders ^ FAA Engineering Development Services Group - TCAS Support ^ BFU Investigation Report AX001-1-2/02 ^ TCAS Safety Study - Collision risk due to TCAS safety issues ^ TCAS Safety Study - Collision risk due to TCAS safety issues (Presentation) ^ FAA Technical Standard Order TSO-C119c ^ European Technical Standard Order ETSO-C119c ^ FAA Advisory Circular AC 20-151A - Airworthiness Approval of Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance Systems (TCAS II), Versions 7.0 & 7.1 and Associated Mode S Transponders ^ AEA Position Paper on TCAS Version 7.1 implementation ^ EASA Deviation Request #56 ^ Comment Response Document (CRD) to NPA 2010-03 ^ ACSS Change 7.1 for TCAS II ^ Press Release - ACSS Certifies Change 7.1 for TCAS 2000 and Legacy TCAS II ^ ACSS Change 7.1 for TCAS II flyer ^ Honeywell Solutions for TCAS II Change 7.1 ^ Rockwell Collins Traffic surveillance products ^ http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/general_aviation/read.main/361350 ^ [1] ab ^ European ACAS II Mandate ^ Explanatory Statement regarding TCAS for CASA(PDF) ^ Airworthiness Notice No. 24 (PDF) ^ DGAC Per - RAP 121 - Subpart K (PDF) ^ DGAC Per - RAP 135 - Subpart C (PDF)

abc

[edit] External links


EUROCONTROL ACAS Website TCAS II Version 7.1 Discussion of TCAS AIS-P/TailLight alternative to TCAS and ADS-B without the problems of TCAS and ADS-B Critical discussion of TCAS using hypothetical abuse/exploit scenarios of TCAS usage Introduction to TCAS II Version 7 Introduction to TCAS II Version 7.1

Decision criteria for regulatory measures on TCAS II version 7.1 TCAS User Interface Awareness video toolkit on Skybrary Collision avoidance on the UKCS (TCAS II Trial) by Mark Prior (Bristow) [show]

v t e

Aircraft components and systems


[show]

v t e

Lists relating to aviation

USAF presentation on future of drones (RPA)


18/10/2011

Click image to see full presentation (note may take a while to download) Last week I posted two presentations by the RAF on British drones. Here is a presentation by Dr Mark Maybury, USAF Chief Scientist on the future development of USAF drones or Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) as he prefers to call them. The presentation was given at a conference in Indiana in September 2011. Highlights from the presentation include:

The USAF currently flies 54 Combat Air Patrols per day using drones It takes 168 people to run a Predator drone Combat Air Patrol and 300 for a Global Hawk. Hence the push for greater autonomy for drones. Predicts ultra-long endurance drones that will stay aloft for years and large airships containing football field size radars giv[ing] extreme resolution / persistence Advocates for greater autonomy for drones and suggests that in the future the operator will only decide the mission intent and constraints and leave it up to the drone to find the best (and I quote) execution path Researchers working on best way to control multiple drones so they can act as single coordinated unit to meet mission need Tiny micro drones open up new opportunities for close-in sensing in urban areas

To view full presentation click on the image above.

FACT SHEET
UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS (UAS)

Updated July 2011 Introduction Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) come in a variety of shapes and sizes and serve diverse purposes. They may have a wingspan as large as a Boeing 737 or be smaller than a radio-controlled model aircraft. A designated pilot in command is always in control of a UAS. Historically, UAS have mainly supported military and security operations overseas, with training occurring in the United States. In addition, UAS are utilized in U.S. border and port surveillance by the Department of Homeland Security, scientific research and environmental monitoring by NASA and NOAA, public safety by law enforcement agencies, research by state universities, and various other uses by public (government) agencies. Interest is growing in civil uses, including commercial photography, aerial mapping, crop monitoring, advertising, communications and broadcasting. Unmanned aircraft systems may increase efficiency, save money, enhance safety, and even save lives. In the United States alone, approximately 50 companies, universities, and government organizations are developing and producing over 155 unmanned aircraft designs. The FAAs Role: Safety First The FAAs main concern about UAS operations in the National Airspace System (NAS) is safety. The NAS encompasses an average of more than 100,000 aviation operations per day, including air carrier, air taxi, general aviation, and military aircraft. There are approximately 18,000 air carrier aircraft and 230,000 active general aviation aircraft in the U.S. It is critical that UAS do not endanger current users of the NAS, including manned and other unmanned aircraft, or compromise the safety of persons or property on the ground. In addition to recreational use of UAS by modelers, there are two acceptable means of operating UAS in the NAS outside of restricted airspace: Special Airworthiness Certificates in the Experimental Category (SAC-EC) and Certificates of Waiver or Authorization (COA). Model Aircraft Recreational use of the NAS is covered by FAA Advisory Circular (AC) 91-57, which generally limits operations to below 400 feet above ground level and away from airports and air traffic. Experimental UAS An SAC-EC is the only certification means available to civil operators for UAS and optionallypiloted aircraft (OPA). Due to regulatory requirements, this approval precludes carrying persons or property for compensation or hire, but does allow operations for research and development, market survey, and crew training. Since July 2005, the FAA has issued 94 SAC-EC, to 13 civil operators covering 20 unique UAS and OPA types. The FAA works with these operators to collect technical and operational data to improve the UAS airworthiness certification process.

Public UAS The COA process is available to public entities, including military, law enforcement, and other governmental agencies who want to fly a UAS in civil airspace. Applicants apply online and the FAA evaluates the request. The FAA issues a COA generally based on the following principles: The COA authorizes an operator to use defined airspace and includes special provisions unique to the proposed operation. For instance, a COA may include a requirement to operate only under Visual Flight Rules (VFR) and/or only during daylight hours. Most COAs are issued for a specified time period (up to one year, in most cases). Most COAs require coordination with an appropriate air traffic control facility and may require the UAS to have a transponder to operate in certain types of airspace. Due to the inability of UAS to comply with see and avoid rules as manned aircraft operations do, a visual observer or an accompanying chase aircraft must maintain visual contact with the UAS and serve as its eyes when operating outside of airspace that is restricted from other users. The FAA issued 146 COAs in 2009 and 298 in 2010, more than doubling in one year. As of June 28, 2011, there were 251 active COAs, 90 different proponents, and 77 different aircraft types. Civil UAS (Future Operations) With the proposed small UAS Rule (described below) and the update to the Civil UAS NAS Integration Roadmap, the FAA is laying the path forward for safe integration of civil UAS into the NAS. The roadmap will describe the research and development necessary for the FAA to develop standards and policy for safe integration. An evolved transition will occur, with access increasing from accommodation to integration into todays NAS, and ultimately into the future NAS as it evolves over time. Operation and Certification Standards To address the increasing civil market and the desire by civilian operators to fly UAS, the FAA is developing new policies, procedures, and approval processes. Developing and implementing new UAS standards and guidance is a long-term effort. The FAA created the Unmanned Aircraft Program Office (UAPO), within Aviation Safety (AVS), and the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Group, within Air Traffic Organization (ATO), to integrate UAS safely and efficiently into the NAS. These specific AVS and ATO offices are co-located to enhance communication and efficiency. The FAA, working closely with stakeholders in the UAS community to define operational and certification requirements, stood up UAS Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) to bring inputs and recommendations to the FAA on UAS matters. It is critical to develop and validate appropriate operational procedures, regulatory standards, and policies to enable routine UAS access to the NAS. The FAA has asked RTCA a group that frequently advises the agency on technical issues to work with industry and develop UAS standards. RTCA will answer two key questions: 1. How will UAS handle communication, command, and control? 2. How will UAS sense and avoid other aircraft?

In addition, the FAA continues to work closely with its international counterparts to harmonize standards, policies, procedures, and regulatory requirements. Data is Key More safety data is needed to assist the FAA in making informed decisions on integration of UAS into the NAS, where the public travels each day. Currently, operations under COAs are required to report monthly operational data and incident/accident data. Increased data collection will allow the FAA to assess and enhance safety and expand the use of this technology. Small Eyes in the Sky The FAA expects small UAS (sUAS) to experience the greatest near-term growth in civil and commercial operations because of their versatility and relatively low initial cost and operating expenses. The agency has received extensive public comment on sUAS, both from proponents who believe their small size warrants minimal regulation and from groups concerned about hazards to manned general aviation aircraft and persons or property on the ground. In April 2008, the FAA chartered the ARC to examine these operational and safety issues and make recommendations for proceeding with regulating sUAS. From this process, the agency drafted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking with anticipated publication, late 2011. One of the most promising potential uses for sUAS is in law enforcement. Although the sUAS ARC was not focused specifically on law enforcement organizations, these proponents were active participants on the ARC. Currently, any law enforcement organization must follow the COA process to conduct demonstration flights. The FAA is working with urban police departments in major metropolitan areas as well as national public safety organizations on test programs involving unmanned aircraft. The goal is to identify the challenges that UAS will bring into this environment to determine the operations that can be conducted safely by law enforcement. The Bottom Line Because of their inherent differences from manned aircraft, such as the pilot removed from the aircraft and the need for sense and avoid, introduction of UAS into the NAS is challenging for both the FAA and aviation community. In addition, UAS must be integrated into an evolving NAS, from one with ground-based navigational aids to a GPS-based system in NextGen. Each year, public agency interest and use of COAs have increased. With the introduction of the sUAS Rule for civil operators, there will be an increase in the number and scope of UAS flights in an already busy NAS. Decisions being made about UAS airworthiness and operational requirements must fully address safety implications of UAS flying in the same airspace as manned aircraft, and perhaps more importantly, aircraft with passengers. Overcoming these challenges associated with the differences between manned and unmanned aircraft while simultaneously transitioning to NextGen further amplifies the need for extensive cooperation between the FAA, other government agencies, and industry.

State Surveillance Drone Has Never Left The Ground

Honolulu harbor surveillance drone BY JIM DOOLEY - The state purchased an unmanned aerial surveillance drone last year to patrol the skies over Honolulu Harbor but the aircraft cant be flown because of heavy air traffic in the area. The $75,000 drone was delivered last June six months after Hawaii Reporter disclosed that the state had not sought and was unlikely to receive federal approval to actually fly the aircraft. It has been stored since then in a state office on the Honolulu waterfront. Harbors Division administrator Davis Yogi said the state didnt check with the Federal Aviation Administration about flying the drone until it received inquiries from Hawaii Reporter in January 2011 on the subject. The FAA then told the state the drone could not be deployed in the crowded airspace adjacent to Honolulu International Airport and Hickam Air Force Base. It was a glitch, said Yogi. It works, were maintaining it, but we just cant fly it. The drone was already built by the time the state talked to the FAA, Yogi continued. We had to accept it, he said. Transportation Department spokesman Dan Meisenzahl said the drone purchase, by harbor security contractor Hawaiya Technologies, Inc., was a mistake and an example of government not working. The state may try to sell the drone or partner with another government agency for its use, said

Meisenzahl.

Hawaiya Technologies was hired under a sole source $1.4 million harbor security contract in 2009. Current Transportation Department Director Glenn Okimoto first sought approval of the Hawaiya sole source contract, including the drone acquisition, in 2007 when Okimoto was head of the DOT harbors division. The drone is a small part of a much larger security system now in operation at several waterfront locations on Oahu. A second system is now being installed on Maui and more are planned for the Big Island and Kauai. Paperwork for the Maui security system said deployment of another drone was planned there, but Yogi said only the Honolulu drone was acquired. Hawaii Reporter first began asking questions about the drone purchase in November 2010, but state officials delayed responding for months. In early January of last year, the state was asked specifically if it had sought or secured an FAA certificate of authorization to fly drones over Honolulu harbor. In February 2011, Meisenzahl noted that the drone surveillance idea was first approved during the administration of Gov. Linda Lingle. After Gov. Neil Abercrombie took office in late 2010, his administration undertook an analysis of the harbor security

Harbors official Davis Yogi at security center video display contract, Mesienzahl said in February 2011. Every significant expenditure and operational practice is under review including the UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) portion of this project, said Meisenzahl. After learning that FAA approval was necessary to fly the drone, the state approached the federal agency for a certificate of authorization, Meisenzahl said. The DOT has taken the first step in this process. It is part of the contractor's obligation to assemble all of the necessary paperwork, Meisenzahl said.

Four months later, the drone was delivered to Hawaii and put into storage at Pier 1 on the waterfront. The state has been silent about the presence of the drone here, and its grounded status, since last year. HawaiiNewsNow last night reported that the drone had been delivered last June. Hawaiya founder Paul Schultz flatly refused to discuss the company's harbor security work last year. "This is not a friendly story, Schultz told Hawaii Reporter. You're coming after me. You can come after me by yourself. But don't call me looking for information. After the drone was delivered, a key state official who oversaw Hawaiyas work for the state,

Kelvin Ogata, left his state job and went to work for a nonprofit company headed by Hawaiya owners Schultz and Mun Won Chang. Schultz and Chang were the subjects of a long-running investigation conducted by the Naval Criminal Investigation Service concerning expenditure of Navy research funds when Schultz served as a U.S. Navy Rear Admiral and Chang worked as a civilian Navy employee. Both left government service with no charges filed against them. Schultz was reduced in rank to captain before he retired. The pair are now married and active in local Democratic Party politics. Schultz and Chang are business associates of former Hawaii Governor John Waihee. A company in which all three are involved, Aina Kai Environmental, performed subcontracting work on Hawaiya Technologies state harbor contract, according to records on file with the State Civil Defense Division. The Honolulu and Maui harbor security systems were financed with grants of $1.4 million and $900,000 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency administered by the Civil Defense office. Yogi said that although the two systems were installed under non-bid contracts to Hawaiiya Technologies, the state is seeking competitive bids for design and installation of the Big Island and Kauai harbor security programs. The Honolulu surveillance drone was touted as an anti-terrorism tool in purchasing documents submitted to the state Office of Procurement.

The craft is equipped with a high-tech camera to scan and track surface activities. Law enforcement agencies around the country are increasingly interested in using unmanned flying drones for surveillance and intelligence-gathering purposes. The aircraft are far less expensive and intrusive than helicopters or piloted planes. The Federal Aviation Administration is developing regulations for their use in civilian air space. The American Civil Liberties Union has expressed concern about invasion of privacy issues raised by use of surveillance drones in other states and is monitoring the situation in Hawaii. Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or drones by law enforcement has a vast potential for abuse, Daniel Gluck, senior staff attorney for ACLU Hawaii, told Hawaii Reporter last year. The Hawaii Supreme Court has already ruled that warrantless infrared surveillance of peoples homes is an unconstitutional invasion of privacy. Gluck said. The ACLU of Hawaii will monitor the details of this particular program (the kinds of technology used to perform the surveillance and the areas where it is used) to ensure it does not intrude on Hawaii residents and businesses protected privacy rights, said Gluck.