Drone Launch and Recovery System in 20 foot Container

NavyRecognition reports DARPA is working on a system that will launch and recover drones of up to 900 pounds that will fit inside a standard 20 foot container.

These could easily handle the Scan Eagle, which is only about 50 pounds currently planned fo the National Security Cutters. Significantly it could handle even more capable UAVs. The UAV in the video weighs 400 pounds.

This is a part of DARPA’s TERN program we discussed earlier.

9 thoughts on “Drone Launch and Recovery System in 20 foot Container

  1. That drone was designed and built by a startup from some of my fellow alumni at Cal Poly, before Lockheed bought them out.

    Haven’t heard of any public sales of the Fury, maybe there have been some SOCOM sales that haven’t been made public.

  2. Why does the USN insist on mounting this to a trailer?

    Why not build SideArm into the walls of both sides of the Hangar – to Port & Starboard – allowing the ‘arm’ to pivot around to the flight deck for attachment of the UAV prior to launch and retrieval following capture?

    Installation of two arms would provide redundancy and surge capability for launching multiple UAVs – if required – and could accelerate the launch cycle while reducing the manpower required to actually launch a UAV (even more than the system does already) by not requiring the trailer to be pushed onto the DDG (or other warship) flight deck (which also eliminates the ability to launch any helicopter).

    SideArm could be housed behind a “rolling door” similar to that used to shield RHIBs on certain ships. Open the ‘door’, swing SideArm around (on its’ pivot) out onto the edge of the flightdeck, attach the UAV, launch the UAV, swing SideArm back into its’ cradle and roll the door back down.

    As a stretch goal of any design, you could allow access to SideArm from within the flightdeck (behind a secondary interior rolling door) to permit attachment & retrieval of the UAV under cover within the hangar. This might also enhance general maintenance of SideArm under cover by the ship’s crew.

    If you look at the video between 1:08 and 1:28, visualize the pivots at the corners of the hangar (with the doors repositioned) and look at the side of the hangar as it appears at 1:31 and envision long narrow door(s) on each side running from the rear corner of the hangar forward.

    This would truly enhance SideArm and offer significant capabilities to the ship equipped with SideArm. This design could also be applied to USCG NSCs!!!

    • Two reasons: 1- building any system INTO a ship is expensive and mostly permanent. 2-This is is designed to be moved from one ship type to another as needed. It is now they build force adaptive packages these days.

  3. UAV’s are a permanent part of our force structure – on land or at sea. The installation of a flexible, adaptable launch system for UAV’s would be a sound addition for future FFG’s, DDG’s, CG’s and (even updated) LCS’s.

    It seems like the natural addition to the concept of Fords vs Ferraris in warship design.

    Leverage Flex Decks and expansive flight decks to launch USV, UUV and UAVs. Use common launch devices for UAVs and common ‘cradles’ to launch RHIBs or USV plus UUVs.

  4. Pingback: A Modest Proposal for a Containerized Weapon System | Chuck Hill's CG Blog

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