Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Through 1990s

L - Z


Lane, Larry [SFC/USA]. "An Eye in the Sky." Soldiers, Jul. 1998, 48-48.

Focus is on the Camcopter, following tests at the McKenna Military Operations on Urbanized Terrain site at Ft. Benning, GA, which can be programmed for specific missions or manually controlled through joystick controls.

McDaniel, Michael L. "High-Altitude UAVs Should Be Naval Players." U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings 125, no. 2 (Feb. 1999): 70-72.

The focus here is on RQ-3 Darkstar and RQ-4 Global Hawk UAVs. "The DARPA program ... is scheduled to transition to an Air Force-led joint program office in 1999, with operational vehicles under Air Force control -- and battle group commanders have learned from bitter experience to depend as little as possible on resources not directly under their command. The answer is obvious -- either expand the Navy/Marine Corps role in both the Joint Program Office and operational units; or buy some Global Hawks and paint 'Navy' or 'Marines' on the fuselage."

McKenna, Pat [TSGT]. "Eyes of the Warrior: Prying Predator Prowls Unfriendly Skies, Peeking at the Enemy." Airman, Jul. 1998, 28-31.

The RQ-1A Predator UAV, now combat-tested over Bosnia, feeds "live video pictures ... into satellites, which are relayed in real-time" to major U.S. and allied headquarters. For the future, "the Air Force is exploring how Predator might broadcast real-time intelligence ... to weapons systems officers in the backseats of F-15Es and F-18s while they orbit the battlefield."

NMIA ZGram. "Second Darkstar UAV Completes Test Flight." 30 June 1998. []

"The second Tier III Minus DarkStar high altitude endurance unmanned air vehicle flew [on 29 June 1998] for the first time. The vehicle took off from the Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.... During the 44-minute flight, the vehicle achieved an altitude of approximately 5,000 feet and completed pre-programmed basic flight maneuvers. The system successfully executed a fully autonomous flight from takeoff to landing utilizing the differential Global Positioning System.... The DarkStar system is designed for aerial reconnaissance in highly defended areas by using low observable characteristics.... It can operate at a range of 500 nautical miles from the launch site and will be able to loiter over the target area for eight hours at an altitude of more than 45,000 feet, carrying either an electro-optical or synthetic aperture radar payload."


1. From

Pickering, Raymond D. [CAPT/USA] "Tactical UAVs: A Supported Unit's Primer." Military Intelligence 23, no. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1997): 45-48.

Robinson, Clarence A., Jr. "Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Help Block, Evade Military Assaults." Signal, Apr. 1998, 43-48.

"[I]ncreasing warfighter demands for battlefield information are highlighting the requirements for enhanced airborne surveillance and reconnaissance operations. The use of unmanned aerial vehicles for these missions is becoming so important in detecting, identifying and tracking hostile activities that some commanders are willing to swap a tank battalion for a company of these sensor-laden airborne platforms."

Sea Power. Editors. "Global Hawk Rolls Out: Key to Info Warfare." Apr. 1997, 38-40.

Strickland, Frank. "The Early Evolution of the Predator Drone." Studies in Intelligence 57, no. 1 (Mar. 2013): 1-6.

"The history of one government project, the GNAT 750, and its rapid evolution into today's Predator UAV demonstrates that fiscal austerity can be an innovator's opportunity."

U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings. Editors. "Dark Star Makes First Flight." 122, no. 10 (Oct. 1996), 87.

Whitley, Gigi. "Study Explores Expanding JSTARS Reach With Unmanned Aerial Vehicle." Inside the Air Force, 20 Aug. 1999, 1.

According to Air Force officials, "[a] Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System [JSTARS] study aimed at expanding the aircraft's surveillance capabilities is exploring whether it is practical to equip the Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle with a modular JSTARS radar."

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