GA-ASI demonstrates electronic attack in USMC exercise
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. (GA-ASI) announced its successful demonstration of Predator B’s electronic attack capability at the US Marine Corp’s (USMC’s) Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) course held at Marine Corp Air Station (MCAS) Yuma in Arizona.
“With this highly effective display of Predator B as a viable and capable EW platform, we are poised to provide even greater value as a multimission RPA solution for the Marines to address their EW requirements,” said Frank W. Pace, President, Aircraft Systems Group, GA-ASI.
The purpose of the demonstration was to evaluate the viability of a RPA to conduct electronic warfare missions against enemy air defences in support of tactical strike aircraft. GA-ASI participated with a company-owned Predator B RPA equipped with a jamming pod containing a Northrop Grumman digital receiver/exciter and controlled by a GA-ASI ground control station (GCS). Predator B was fully integrated into the advanced command and control (C2) networks and electronic warfare (EW) architecture of the exercise, with over 20 aircraft participating. The Northrop Grumman payload proved to be effective and seamlessly integrated with the Predator B avionics, command and control architecture.
Future demonstrations will expand on the success and lessons learned from the use of Predator B to execute a multi-node approach against a more capable integrated air defence system (IADS) in concert with other unmanned aircraft systems and EA-6B Prowlers in future training exercises. The focus of future demonstrations will be on a more integrated and networked EW capability, expanding the C2 network to direct the aircraft’s EW payload and other assets from the Cyber/Electronic Warfare Coordination Cell (C/EWCC) located at MCAS Yuma. “We are using multiple platforms in a networked approach to prosecute the IADS to protect our strikers as they hit their targets,” stated Major Charles Dudik, HQMC Aviation EW Requirements Officer. “It is a non-traditional approach to this problem set, but we believe this is where the future is headed for EW.”
A technologically advanced derivative of the combat-proven Predator, the multi-mission Predator B provides essential situational awareness for warfighters, excelling in combat missions focusing on intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR), precision strike on time-sensitive targets, close-air support (CAS), signals intelligence (SIGINT), forward air control (FAC), improvised explosive device (IED) detection, bomb damage assessment (BDA), and now airborne electronic attack.