BAE Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

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SKB
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BAE Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by SKB »

Image
^ Taranis. Built in bloody Yorkshire tha knows lad.

Introduction
The BAE Systems Taranis is a British demonstrator programme for Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle (UCAV) technology, under development primarily by the defence contractor BAE Systems Military Air & Information. The aircraft, which is named after the Celtic god of thunder Taranis, first flew in 2013. A semi-autonomous unmanned war plane, the Taranis is designed to fly intercontinental missions, and will carry a variety of weapons, enabling it to attack both aerial and ground targets. It will utilise stealth technology, giving it a low radar profile, and it will be controllable via satellite link from anywhere on Earth. An operational derivative of the Taranis is expected to enter military service some time after 2030.

Background
The development of UAVs was a key part of the UK's Defence Industrial Strategy, which was announced in December 2005, and specified the need for the UK to maintain its "sovereign" aircraft and UAV/UCAV construction skills. The Strategic Unmanned Air Vehicles (Experiment) Integrated Project Team, or SUAV(E) IPT, was given responsibility for auditing and overseeing the Taranis project.

Design and development
The Taranis project is led by BAE Systems, and also involves Rolls-Royce, GE Aviation Systems, QinetiQ and the Ministry of Defence (MoD). As the prime contractor, BAE Systems is responsible for the overall programme, and also for many of the component technologies, including stealth technology, systems integration and system control infrastructure. BAE Systems and QinetiQ collaborated on all aspects relating to the autonomy of the system.

GE Aviation Systems (formerly Smiths Aerospace) is responsible for providing Taranis' fuel-gauging and electrical power systems. Rolls-Royce is responsible for the UCAV's propulsion system, having a 5% workshare in the project, while the Integrated Systems Technologies (Insyte) subsidiary of BAE Systems is providing C4ISTAR support.

At the project's inception, BAE Systems stated that "Taranis will make use of at least 10 years of research and development into low observables, systems integration, control infrastructure and full autonomy. It follows the completion of risk-reduction activities to ensure the mix of technologies, materials and systems used are robust enough for the 'next logical step'." These "risk-reduction activities" included several earlier BAE stealth aircraft and UAV programmes, such as Replica, Nightjar I, Nightjar II, Kestrel, Corax, Raven and HERTI.

Prototype
The first steel for the Taranis prototype was cut in September 2007, and assembly began in February 2008. On 9 January 2009, the Ministry of Defence denied that the Taranis had been flying near the site of a damaged wind turbine, after local people claimed to have seen an UFO. :roll:

The prototype, which had an initial development cost of £143 million, was unveiled by BAE Systems at Warton Aerodrome, Lancashire, on 12 July 2010. Ground tests of the prototype began in 2010, and flight trials were initially expected to begin in 2011. However, the aircraft's first flight was later delayed to 2012, then delayed further and finally took place on 10 August 2013.

The prototype has a maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) of about 8,000 kg (18,000 lb), and is of a similar size to the BAE Hawk training jet. It has two internal weapons bays, and is intended to incorporate "full autonomy", allowing it to operate without human control for a large part of its mission.

Flight testing
On 25 October 2013, the UK Ministry of Defence revealed that initial flight tests had already taken place. Ground tests were conducted in 2010 and flight trials occurred in 2013. The MoD did not officially comment on the Taranis until the initial trials programme had been completed.

On 5 February 2014, BAE revealed information on the Taranis' flight tests. The UCAV's first flight occurred on 10 August 2013 at Woomera Test Range in South Australia. This flight lasted for approximately 15 minutes. A second sortie was launched on 17 August, and subsequent flights surpassed expectations for the airframe, flying at various speeds and heights for as long as one hour. By 2014, the Taranis' development costs had reached £185 million, compared to £140 million as originally projected. The Taranis is planned to be operational "post 2030" and used in concert with manned aircraft.

Follow-on development
Under the terms of an Anglo-French development contract announced in 2014, parts from the Taranis will be combined with the Dassault nEUROn in a joint European UCAV.

Name: Taranis
Type: UCAV Demonstrator
Length: 12.43 m (40 ft 9 in)
Wingspan: 10 m (32 ft 10 in) (approximate)
Height: 4 m (13 ft 1 in)
Powerplant: 1 × Rolls-Royce Adour Moderate by-pass ratio turbofan engine, 44 kN (10,000 lbf) thrust (approximate)
Maximum speed: Mach 1+ (Rumoured)
Armament: 2 x internal missile bay provision

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SKB
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Re: BAE Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by SKB »

Taranis promotional video:


Taranis' first flight - 10th August 2013

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Re: Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by shark bait »

An absolutely fantastic machine. I really hope it doest become one of those programs that just fade away.
Any suggestions for uses?
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Re: Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by Dahedd »

Exciting aircraft. Could be perfect for SEAD or as a air defence missile carrier along side Typhoons.

Wonder if they couldn't upscale it. Give the RAF a regional bomber. No crew, lots of fuel, lots of range.

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Re: Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by SKB »

Under the terms of an Anglo-French development contract announced in 2014, parts from the Taranis will be combined with the Dassault nEUROn in a joint European UCAV.

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The Other Chris
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Re: Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by The Other Chris »

Specifically the UK and France have funded development of UCAV demonstrators separately with the intention of coming back together to determine the way forward.

With regards purpose, although aerial supremacy is the ultimate end goal (KPP's covering speed of decision making, reaction and performance) technology maturity levels are indicating a definite split between ISR and Strike roles.

There is considerable debate in the US about which direction to go, and this decision will undoubtedly inform the FCAS (2014) decision making.

For background reading on this debate, the Jane's overview and the involvement of some of Information Dissemination's authors giving evidence for the Armed Services Committee is a good place to start:

http://www.informationdissemination.net ... -sub.html/

Associated video: http://armedservices.granicus.com/Media ... lip_id=360

http://www.informationdissemination.net ... class.html

http://www.janes.com/article/51133/deba ... tors-warn/

Perhaps FCAS will result in a single joint aircraft, separate sovereign platforms with common equipment or even both nations developing a platform for joint use to cover ISR and Strike (or other tasks).

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Re: Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by Gabriele »

The two demonstrators, Taranis and UCAV, pre-date the FCAS agreements. FCAS proper is a series of deals for developing specific systems for future UCAVs. Engine (Rolls Royce & SNECMA), sensors (Thales and Selex ES), datalink. BAE and Dassault would cover the air vehicle itself.
Meanwhile, some activities continue respectively on Taranis and on NEURON.
You might also know me as Liger30, from that great forum than MP.net was.

Arma Pacis Fulcra.
Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum

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Re: Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by shark bait »

Excellent news!!
Taranis UCAV Set for New Flight Tests

http://www.defensenews.com/story/defens ... /28305861/
Taranis possibly tanking to the air again, maybe it is being taken seriously, maybe, just maybe, this wont end up being vapourware
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Re: Taranis (UCAV Demonstrator) (BAE Systems/MOD)

Post by bobp »

This is good news hopefully we are looking at the future of uk air power. I remember the EFA prototype which later became the Eurofighter.


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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by SKB »

Thread renamed to accommodate Taranis and Future Combat Air System (FCAS) news and info.

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by The Armchair Soldier »

http://aviationweek.com/defense/fcas-st ... ngine-year

Does anyone here have a subscription to Aviation Week and would be willing to share some of the article's key points?

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by Ron5 »

Sure:

Dassault and the French will stay interested in the joint program for as long as it takes to extract Bae's superior knowledge of LO, UAV control systems, LO aerodynamics, and British money. After which they will FO and develop their own. And the Brits will cancel their program to buy American with some unimportant UK subcontracting work thrown in the deal so the Brit politicians can claim thousands of jobs preserved/created. UK government is the softest touch in international deal making. All Oxbridge arts graduates with subzero knowledge or interest in technology or industry. Oh look, tits on page 3....

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by bobp »

@Ron5
Are the tits still on page 3 ? A few weeks ago I read they had been removed. I fully agree with your appraisal of HM Government.

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by GibMariner »

Europe plays catch-up with US in drone technology
Locked away in a large shed in the north of England, surrounded by fields of cows, is one of Britain’s most closely guarded secrets.
It is home to Taranis, the unmanned stealth jet built by BAE Systems to test the technology that could drive the next generation of combat aircraft to fly for Britain.
Across the Channel, the Neuron is another unmanned test bed, but for different technologies brought together by Dassault Aviation of France as part of a six nation consortium.
The two drones are defence system demonstrators for the British and French governments. But together they could also be the blueprint for a European project to develop the world’s most advanced unmanned combat jet, capable of operating autonomously in highly hostile conditions. In the process, the EU could ensure that it retained the critical industrial capabilities needed for the next generation of warfare.
BAE and Dassault are eight months into a two-year government-funded study on the feasibility of a joint Future Combat Air System, or FCAS. The initial stage has been deliberately limited to the UK and France, for fear that more partner countries will add complexity and just push up costs, as happened with the seven-nation A400M military transport aircraft built by Airbus.
The aim of the Franco-British study is to nail down what the military needs for an unmanned combat aircraft might be in 20 years: will it have to fly with or in place of manned aircraft; what technology is available to deliver that; and, finally, what the cost might be? Only once those questions have been answered, will other partners be allowed to join.
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/d9209910-33b5 ... z3igC2zZme

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by marktigger »

drones have been great on the 3rd world battlefields of the early part of this century but how will they fair on a 1st world battlefield with integrated airdefence and Electronic warfare?

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by downsizer »

marktigger wrote:drones have been great on the 3rd world battlefields of the early part of this century but how will they fair on a 1st world battlefield with integrated airdefence and Electronic warfare?
Burn the witch.

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by seaspear »

marktigger wrote:drones have been great on the 3rd world battlefields of the early part of this century but how will they fair on a 1st world battlefield with integrated airdefence and Electronic warfare?
Iran proved a point in hijacking one the U.S.A.F drones and has got its secrets, certainly Russian fighter jets are equipped with ew to be used against drones and wouldn't be averse to selling any technology to third world countries

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by marktigger »

Chinese are playing radio wars with them.

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by Lugzy »

A little update about taranis , it seems final test flights could be carried out by the end of the year.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/ ... -year.html

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by shark bait »

Lugzy wrote:A little update about taranis , it seems final test flights could be carried out by the end of the year.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/ ... -year.html
seems strange how few test have been done compared to its European cousin, very glad there doing a few more though. (more awesome videos please)

Also seems strange the lack of drive to build a few more and deploy them. Seems a real shame, would look scary as hell with a few brimstones in those weapon bays.
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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by shark bait »

One of my favourite images, old but awesome.
I was talking about it on the F35 thread but though imshould post here .

Image

Image

Image
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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Two of the three pictured were doing loops over my house on Saturday... felt honoured (joke!)

The Typhoon really does seem to turn on a dime; wonder what it is like at high altitude & at high speed
Ever-lasting truths: Multi-year budgets/ planning by necessity have to address the painful questions; more often than not the Either-Or prevails over Both-And.
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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by Lugzy »

shark bait wrote:
Lugzy wrote:A little update about taranis , it seems final test flights could be carried out by the end of the year.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/ ... -year.html
seems strange how few test have been done compared to its European cousin, very glad there doing a few more though. (more awesome videos please)

Also seems strange the lack of drive to build a few more and deploy them. Seems a real shame, would look scary as hell with a few brimstones in those weapon bays.
I agree , what a great looking aircraft Taranis is , but I'm also surprised that after creating a very capable airframe (from what I've read ) there's no noise on a possible future for it , last air flight test maybe this year then what ? What a shame it would be if it was shelved .

Maybe taranis is BAEs chip in the UK-French cooperation project for a future unmanned combat drone ? , but considering how far we've come makes me think we did very well on our own tbh ,
Taranis is a great advertisement for the British aerospace industry , and I'd say it's world class .

My only worry about drones is what's been mentioned before by members , the ability for enemies to hack into them , secure datalinks and comms should be one of our main focuses going foward , I'd hate to see one of these on Iranian TV .

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Re: Taranis & Future Combat Air System

Post by Lugzy »

shark bait wrote:One of my favourite images, old but awesome.
I was talking about it on the F35 thread but though imshould post here .

Image

Image

Image
The past ,,,, the present,,,,, and the future of the RAF in one excellent photo .

Can't beat the sound of a rolls Royce merlin engine , what a fantastic aircraft the spitfire is ,

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