"The greatest memorial to our fallen troops cannot be found in the words we say or the places we gather. The more lasting tribute is all around us -- a country where citizens have the right to worship as they want, to march for what they believe, and to say what they think" -President George W. Bush Bush said during a commemorative ceremony for Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery, May 29.
Raven Small Unmanned Aircraft System
What is it? The Raven Small Unmanned Aircraft System (RQ-11) provides the small unit the organic capability to perform Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BLOS) Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition (RSTA) coverage of marginal maneuver areas. Brigade to Company Commanders have a far greater ability to shape over-the-hill operations with their own dedicated unmanned aircraft system (UAS). Raven is a hand-launched and ruck-sack portable UAS comprised of three air vehicles, a Ground Control Unit (GCU), a Remote Video Terminal (RVT), Electro-optical and Infrared payloads, and a Field Repair Kit (FRK). Raven continues to be instrumental in OIF/OEF and has logged more than 21,400 flight hours, as of 14 December 2006.
What has the Army done? The Army procured 376 Raven A models in the past to support the GWOT, but conducted the appropriate processes for a competitive selection for the Army's Small UAS. The Program Executive Office, Aviation, in conjunction with the Aviation and Missile Life Cycle Command, approved the Raven B system for Full Rate Production (FRP) on 5 October 2006. Eighty-four Raven B models have been fielded as of 14 December 2006.
What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future? The Army will continue to procure the Raven B UAS and will integrate a digital data link to improve frequency management and interoperability. Additionally, Raven A models will be converted to Model B's. Model B includes upgraded optics/IR illumination, upgraded GCU, an overall system weight reduction of 12.5 pounds, and one fielded configuration for standardization.
Why is this important to the Army? This approach provides commanders at the small unit level an organic UAS.
- This topic was taken directly from the 2007 Army Posture Statement.
- 2007 Strategic Communication Guide - Be Army Strong, and Army Smart. Read the 2007 Army Strategic Communications Guide.