The Warsaw University of Technology (WUT) and Lockheed Martin have demonstrated new technology as part of a joint programme on the concept of manned-unmanned teaming for the optimisation of diverse fleets of aircraft.
The demonstration focused on the aerial command and control (C2) of multiple UAS, with technology that uses advanced mathematic calculations and a systems-of-systems approach to bolster mission efficiency by adapting the fleet’s commanded flight paths, speeds, division of duties, and sensor performance.
The goal was to incorporate airborne C2, improve user interfaces, and test new methods for related subroutines. With a vision of ultimately developing fast dynamically adaptive approaches to live management of a UAV fleet, this work is an important contribution to the concept of manned-unmanned teaming, where manned assets operate seamlessly with surrogate UAS, often controlling many at a time against specific tasks.
This technology demonstrates that, with the right tools, an operator may adapt to changing scenarios, calculate new solutions, and deploy those new, optimised solutions to the fleet of commanded aircraft, whether for civil or military purposes. The demonstration can be equated to a search and rescue task, where every minute shaved off of a search pattern could be the difference between life and death.
Prof Janusz Narkiewicz, head of WUT’s Department of Automation and Aeronautical Systems, said: ‘These technologies have tremendous commercial and military potential as the world moves toward greater and greater use of UAS.
‘Understanding how different assets can interoperate, communicate, and serve common objectives with maximum efficiency is a challenging task in the growing field of UAV technologies.’