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Unlike APATS, OPATS have no single source of procurement and management.
The Direct Support Electrical Systems Test Set (DSESTS), fielded in the early 1980s, is the Army's first OPATS.The DSESTS consists of an M900 series 5-ton truck, an expansion shelter, automated test equipment (ATE), and additional hardware and software components that together make up a test program set for each LRM.
The DSESTS continues to provide an OPATS capability for Abrams and Bradley platforms.
PDTMDE fielded a new OPATS, BSTF version 5, in 2002 to provide LRM support of the OH-58D Kiowa helicopter optical system.
As soon as the return signal from the aircraft's laser reflector is detected, the Opats switches to continuous mode and sends deviation signals to the ground control station which in turn keeps the aircraft within the beam all the way down to flaring point, engine shut down and finally touch down with less than a one-metre deviation.
Things are moving apace with the Ranger system, which has thus far logged 600 trouble-free landings Ruag, which has exported the Ranger to Finland, also offers the Opats, which can be adapted to a wide range of drones.
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