Textron Systems has upgraded the first one system remote-video terminal (OSRVT) to the -50 configuration.
Under an ongoing support contract, the company aims to upgrade more than 3,100 OSRVT systems to the -50 standard for the US Army, Marine Corps and Special Operations Command, by 2016.
Representing the first fleet-wide update to the OSRVT programme, the -50 configuration enables level of interoperability (LOI) three, a bi-directional capability that enables users to control the unmanned aircraft's payload for greater situational awareness in the theatre, and better-informed decision-making in kinetic operations.
Textron Systems Ground Control Technologies vice-president Wayne Prender said: "The OSRVT -50 configuration will allow our US Army and Marine Corps customers to align situational awareness from their unmanned systems even more seamlessly into their decision-making.
"With thousands of fielded units logging countless service hours around the world, we are enhancing a trusted platform to put even more capability into warfighters' hands, whenever and wherever it's needed, in real time."
In addition to several enhancements for greater flexibility, functionality and ease of use, the OSRVT -50 also includes software upgrades to a service-oriented architecture (SOA) that enables more rapid insertion of new features and technologies as requirements evolve.
The user interface has also been updated for easier configuration, intuitive controls and touchscreen operations. The system is also scheduled to be fielded in a ruggedised tablet format.
It is anticipated that the configuration will undergo initial operational testing in 2015, to help provide army units with enhanced interoperability on Gray Eagle, Hunter and Shadow unmanned aerial systems.
A part of Textron's larger family of remote products, the OSRVT is based on a modular, SOA-based software architecture that is easily ported to the hardware and form factor required by the customer for military, civil and commercial applications worldwide.
The system enables soldiers to remotely download live surveillance images and critical geospatial data directly from joint operations tactical unmanned aircraft systems and manned platforms.