The USAF wants a single-seater cockpit for its Reaper drones

MQ-9Despite the pretty catastrophic results of the action of drones revealed Americans a few days by The Intercept ago, the U.S. air force wants to reduce its drone crews to a single driver. Why would it take 2 people to operate a drone and do what a pilot of F-16 is alone in his cockpit while risking his life to each flight? It is the relentless logic that wants to apply the USAF its Reaper despite efficiency already very dubious of its drone strikes.

1,000 pilots and 1,000 operators required to ensure the permanence of 60 patrols

MQ-9-cockpit

The control station of a General Atomics MQ-9 “Reaper” (Photo: USAF)

The USAF wants to reduce its fleet of drones operating costs. Currently, it takes a pilot and sensor operator to fly a drone of type MQ-9 besides the ground teams necessary for take-off and landing phases. As comes to reveal the Lt Gen Robert Otto, in charge of the staff of the ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) of the Air Force, 60 orbits monitoring continuously that ensures American drone fleet mobilizes 1,000 pilots and 1,000 operators. reduce this crew to one person will obviously represent a substantial saving for the ISR. Yet we need to General Atomics to rethink the cockpit already very crowded screens of all kinds. Industry should also further automation of the flight. Responsible for particular refers to the ability of take-off and automatic landing of the RQ-4 Global Hawk, which he would dream see Reaper and Predator with in turn. But in addition to this human resources optimization, Lt Gen Robert Otto evokes a new approach to the long term where the pilots of fighter aircraft, still, could fly a drone for winger. F-35 pilots will fire the weapons carried by the drone.
At a time where the effectiveness of the U.S. drones is controversial, the USAF is considering delete sensors operators positions. The last straw.

Sources :
“USAF intel chief proposes single-operator MQ-9 cockpit”, FlightGlobal, 28 octobre 2015
“The Drone Papers”, The Intercept

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