Marines Pursuing Large Ship-Based UAV For Comms, ISR, Fires

By: Megan Eckstein, USNI News

“The Marine Corps is in the early phases of developing a large Group 5 unmanned aerial system (UAS) that would operate from a ship and provide long-range, long-endurance capabilities for not only the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) but also potentially the Navy’s fleet and Army ground forces.

The Marines’ initial capabilities document for the MAGTF UAS Expeditionary (MUX) program was approved this month by the Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC). The document merged what had been two separate Group 5 UAS requirements that the Marine Corps ultimately determined could be fulfilled with a single air system, Lt. Col. Noah Spataro, the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Capabilities Integration and Requirements Officer under the Deputy Commandant for Combat Development and Integration, told USNI News last week. Group 5 UAS typically fly at medium- to high-altitude ranges and can weigh above 1,300 pounds – and are therefore the most complex to launch and recover.”

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