USNI News polled its writers, naval analysts and service members on what they consider the most important military and maritime stories in 2018. This story is part of USNI News year-end series.
2018 brought the Marine Corps such rapid advances in its next ground vehicle that the service canceled an interim upgrade program, new details on a large Group 5 unmanned aerial vehicle and a plan to upgrade amphibious warships over time to better support future Marine operations. Read More
U.S. Marines with Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadron (VMU) 2 launch an RQ-21A Blackjack for Assault Support Tactics 2 at Canon Air Defense Complex (P111), Yuma, Ariz., Oct. 12, 2016. US Marine Corps photo.
FREDERICKSBURG, Va. – The Marine Corps will work with the Air Force to put its Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadron (VMU) crews through Group 5 UAV training to be qualified to operate MQ-9 Reapers. The idea is to help create an infrastructure and a knowledge base on large UAV operations ahead of fielding the Marines’ ship-based UAV in the 2020s. Read More
DARPA demonstrator system of a medium-altitude, long-endurance unmanned air system (UAS). DAPRA Image
FREDERICKSBURG, Va. – The Marine Corps and Navy are preparing for a high-end fight that will require ships to be distributed across the ocean rather than clustered around an aircraft carrier, and the Marines’ future Group 5 unmanned aerial system will give them the airborne early warning capability to break free from the carrier and its E-2D Advanced Hawkeye early warning aircraft. Read More
A crane moves the lower stern into place on the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier John F. Kennedy (CVN-79) at Huntington Ingalls Shipbuilding in Newport News, Va. on June 22, 2017. HII Photo
The Senate Armed Services Committee is looking for more information from the Navy before it will support buying additional ships in Fiscal Year 2019, which its House counterparts wholeheartedly endorsed doing. Read More
The Bell V-247 tiltrotor is an unmanned aerial system (UAS) that will combine the vertical lift capability of a helicopter with the speed and range of a conventional fixed-wing aircraft, and would provide long-endurance persistent expeditionary and surveillance and fires capabilities. Bell Image
THE PENTAGON – The Marine Corps has refined its vision for a large sea-based unmanned aerial system (UAS) after honing in on capability gaps the Marines most urgently need to fill. Read More
The Office of Naval Research and DARPA are collaborating on the Tern project to give forward-deployed small ships the ability to serve as mobile launch and recovery sites for medium-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aerial systems that would provide ISR and other capabilities. DARPA rendering.
SAN DIEGO – The Marine Corps is reconsidering the requirements for its large amphibious ship-based unmanned aerial system (UAS), after early industry input showed the service was headed towards something too large and too expensive, the deputy commandant for combat development and integration told reporters today. Read More
The Bell V-247 tiltrotor is an unmanned aerial system (UAS) that will combine the vertical lift capability of a helicopter with the speed and range of a conventional fixed-wing aircraft, and would provide long-endurance persistent expeditionary and surveillance and fires capabilities. Bell rendering.
ARLINGTON, Va. – The head of Marine Corps aviation has big plans for the service’s planned large unmanned aerial vehicle set to enter the service in the next decade. Read More