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Reapers! Reapers! Reapers!

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posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 02:17 PM
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In an utter reversal of policy, the US Air Force is going to expand its Reaper fleet. It wants to add another 75 Reapers. This is seen as an acknowledgement of the fact the needs being imposed by the commitments the US has for its persistent drone fleet: the plan had been to get rid of the Reapers in 2017 (*). This will, of course, cause other problems.

The USAF requires two people to fly the Reapers. It also requires the pilots actually take off and land the Reapers. The US Army with its Gray Eagle does not. There's no inherent reason why the Reapers could not automatically to/l. Additionally, the blue beanies are now having to use Civvies to fly the drones because they don't have enough pilots! These are all things to fix (*cough*let the airmen fly*cough*)

Jumping back across the pond, the French are also buying another 3 Reapers.

Given the short comings of the Reaper, it seems it would be a good idea to come up with a replacement that could work in not quite as permissive environments.

*. I had been advocating the Border Patrol get them, sans Hellfires. Lord knows with my experiences with the Border Patrol, I'd rather they NOT have missiles, thanx.




posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 02:31 PM
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a reply to: anzha

I don't think there is a retirement date set for the MQ-9 Reaper yet. It's the MQ-1 Predator that is retiring in 2018 IIRC.
edit on 12-12-2015 by Sammamishman because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 02:34 PM
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a reply to: Sammamishman

*head desk*



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 03:21 PM
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a reply to: anzha

The Air Force is investigating a single pilot control system, and an autoland similar to the RQ-4 for the Reaper.



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 03:24 PM
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a reply to: anzha

It happens. The linked article even shows both types.



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 03:26 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

That's good. They need to do something, the demand for sorties is higher than they have the man power to generate. Especially in the short term.



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 03:43 PM
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a reply to: Sammamishman

They're running 60 orbits now, which under current conditions requires 1,000 pilots and another 1,000 sensor operators.

As was pointed out, if a pilot in a single seat manned platform that lands as fast as a Reaper flies can use NVGs, run a targeting pod, navigate, communicate, and release weapons on target, why does a Reaper need two crew for every mission.
edit on 12/12/2015 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 04:34 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: Sammamishman

They're running 60 orbits now, which under current conditions requires 1,000 pilots and another 1,000 sensor operators.

As was pointed out, if a pilot in a single seat manned platform that lands as fast as a Reaper flies can use NVGs, run a targeting pod, navigate, communicate, and release weapons on target, why does a Reaper need two crew for every mission.


I wonder if it's because the pilots aren't subject to any sensory input other than eyes?

You can't feel a turn, g force, nose dive etc from behind a screen so rules are the you can't take your eyes off the screen?

I don't know, but I have slammed my A-10c into the deck many times when forgetting to put autopilot on and getting engrossed in target hunting.

(Flight simmer here!)



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 06:38 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: Sammamishman

They're running 60 orbits now, which under current conditions requires 1,000 pilots and another 1,000 sensor operators.

As was pointed out, if a pilot in a single seat manned platform that lands as fast as a Reaper flies can use NatVGs, run a targeting pod, navigate, communicate, and release weapons on target, why does a Reaper need two crew for every mission.


A fighter plane could only stay in the air for a couple of hours at a time, while a Reaper can stay in the air for 14 hours. The fighter pilot only sees the HUD display, while the Reaper has multiple sensors and displays (maps, priority lists, front view, system status)?



posted on Dec, 12 2015 @ 07:10 PM
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a reply to: stormcell

The F-16 pilots are looking at displays, showing the targeting pods, programming weapons with GPS coordinates, etc. They're just as busy as both UAV operators.



posted on Dec, 13 2015 @ 07:44 PM
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posted on Dec, 13 2015 @ 07:51 PM
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a reply to: yuppa

Yah, when I saw the thread title, that's what I thought too:



Followed by: OMG! We gotta do something!

Then I realized I play WAY too much Mass Effect.......



posted on Dec, 13 2015 @ 07:51 PM
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originally posted by: Forensick

originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: Sammamishman

They're running 60 orbits now, which under current conditions requires 1,000 pilots and another 1,000 sensor operators.

As was pointed out, if a pilot in a single seat manned platform that lands as fast as a Reaper flies can use NVGs, run a targeting pod, navigate, communicate, and release weapons on target, why does a Reaper need two crew for every mission.


I wonder if it's because the pilots aren't subject to any sensory input other than eyes?

You can't feel a turn, g force, nose dive etc from behind a screen so rules are the you can't take your eyes off the screen?

I don't know, but I have slammed my A-10c into the deck many times when forgetting to put autopilot on and getting engrossed in target hunting.

(Flight simmer here!)


Maybe they should actually put pilots in sim cockpits and actually simulate turn force and g force for more accurate control.



posted on Dec, 13 2015 @ 07:53 PM
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originally posted by: eriktheawful
a reply to: yuppa

Yah, when I saw the thread title, that's what I thought too:



Followed by: OMG! We gotta do something!

Then I realized I play WAY too much Mass Effect.......



Yeah. and.. Im commander shepard and this is my favorite quote on the internet




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