A prototype of the high performance KUS-FS Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) being developed by Korean Air and LIGNex1 is being showcased at the out- door static display. The 3m tall KUS-FS made its first flight in 2012. This is the first show appearance for the MALE UAS type, which is 13m in length and has a 25m wingspan.
Military uses envisaged for the KUS-FS include communication relay duties, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions, Electronic Warfare (EW) and Signals Intelligence ((SIGINT). A civilian variant could be used for maritime and border surveillance in addition to undertaking environment and scientific surveillance and monitoring. Airframe design and development are undertaken by Korean Air, while the Ground Control System (GCS), datalinks and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) is being supplied by LIGNex1.
A typical user configuration for the MALE UAS would consist of 2-4 flying systems with Electro-Optical/Infra-Red (EO/IR) and SAR payloads operating with the help of a GCS. A data link system allows trans- mission of UAV control commands and status information and image data. High datalink reliability is provided through a triple link (2 Line of Sight (LOS) link and 1 satellite link). The GCS comprises of a Primary /Secondary Pilot Console with datalink. The sensor operator console is used to operate the EO/IR and SAR/ Ground Moving Target Indicator (GMTI) payloads.
The GCS can also undertake mission planning and analysis, Control of auto take-off and landing, acquisition and analysis of EO/IR, SAR images and interoperability for C4I (AFCCS, MIMS. The entire GCS is transportable on a container truck and weighs 24.6 tonne.
The KUS-FS features an X Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) which allows col- lection of high-resolution SAR/GMTI images during day and night regardless of weather conditions. The KUS-FS is powered by a 1200 hp engine, but performance figures such as flight endurance, max speed, cruising speed and range have not been made public.
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