Analysis of the technical and cost challenges of utilizing near space as compared to HAE UAVs provides an estimate of future investment by AFSPC.
Systems providing extended, high-altitude surveillance and communications include HAE UAVs and high-altitude, long-loiter airships.
(54) Because gust criteria significantly influence an airship's hull strength and shear feasibility, high-altitude, long-loiter vehicles would then fall under the same air-defense vulnerabilities as do HAE UAVs.
Airship-acquisition strategy will likely be the same as that for HAE UAVs, which used a multiphase Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration approach.
The HAE UAV system will provide rapid-response, worldwide reconnaissance coverage that is under the direct control and tasking of the JFC.
The HAE UAV system will comprise an airborne element (air vehicles with sensors, avionics, line-of-sight and satellite communications data links and data storage), a ground system (consisting of a launch and recovery element and a mission control element) and a support element.