In related news, the US Army has selected three contractors to move forward with Phase I of the service's Division TUAV [tactical unmanned aerial vehicle] SIGINT Payload (DTSP
) program, itself essentially a restructured version of the Prophet Air program.
Monmouth, NJ) is expected to shortlist up to three bidders out of the nine that responded to a broad area announcement (BAA) for the provision of a signals-intelligence (SIGINT) payload for use aboard the Army's Shadow 200 tactical unmanned aerial vehicle (TUAV), under the Division TUAV SIGINT Program (DTSP).
With the risk-mitigation phase of the DTSP already completed (see "US Army Kicking Off TUAV SIGINT Program," JED, March 2001, p.
First off, Prophet Control has been subsumed by the DCGS-A program, and Prophet Air has been called the Division Tactical UAV SIGINT Payload (DTSP
) program for several months now.
The objective of the Division TUAV SIGINT Program (DTSP), according to Chris Keller, CECOM's deputy program manager for signals warfare, "is to put a SIGINT capability into the air, specifically in a Shadow 200," the aircraft selected under the Army's TUAV program (see "US Army Makes Final TUAV Selection," JED, January 2000, p.
These size and weight issues represent perhaps the greatest challenges to the DTSP. "Obviously," Maziarz said, "doing this on a UAV is something that hasn't been done, and certainly the size and weight [requirements] present some challenges we have to overcome." As a point of comparison, Keller noted, "When we used to fly [a SIGINT payload] on a helicopter, our capacity was 2,000 lbs." These challenges, however, are outweighed, Keller said, by "the ability to get reasonably close to and to pick up verylow-power and hard-to-detect emitters.