General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) has been awarded a $12.1 million contract to upgrade MQ-9 Block 1 and Block 5 Remotely Piloted Aircraft and Block 25 Dual Control Module Ground Control Station (DCMGCS) and Block 30 Ground Control Station (GCS) for the Air National Guard (ANG). The procurement includes kits for High-Definition (HD) displays and Barrett Asymmetrical Digital Datalink Computers (BADDC), as well as Multi-Intelligence Smart Processing (MISP).
“We’re pleased to see the ANG move forward with these upgrades and further enhance the capabilities of their RPA systems,” said GA-ASI President David R. Alexander. “The HD kits and BADDCs will allow enable increased throughput and higher quality of sensor data between the MQ-9 and GCS, while MISP will enable seamless data flow between GCS and external networks. These upgrades will improve mission-effectiveness tremendously.”
The BADDC act as a payload data multiplexer, increasing the number of sensor data sources that the RPA can send over data links within its channel and bandwidth constraints. The BADDC interleaves data from the RPA’s onboard sensors and forwards the data into a single data link channel, enabling several sources of sensor data to be transmitted through the link.
MISP is a bi-directional data architecture developed in conjunction with the Air Force Research Laboratory and BAE Systems. MISP enables the GCS and Squadron Operations Center to share internal and external data in a secure manner. The MISP network establishes a baseline for quickly adding new Internet Protocol-enabled sensors to the system. These sensors can be operated locally or remotely as desired by the aircrew. Additionally MISP provides unit level intelligence capabilities to refine MQ-9 sensor data disseminated to the enterprise. Using MISP, MQ-9 data is disseminated to the right personnel, at the right time, to inform the best possible decision.