General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI) has demonstrated its Avenger uncrewed aircraft systems’ (UASs) capability to deliver fused sensor data.

Two GA-ASI Avengers were fitted with Lockheed Martin Legion Pods for the two-hour flight demonstration conducted over the southern Californian desert.

During the demonstration, the Legion Pod’s infrared search-and-track system (IRST21) detected multiple fast-moving jets operating in the area.

The on-pod Lockheed Martin fusion software combined the sensor data in real-time from both pods while the two Avengers streamed it to the ground station, according to GA-ASI.

GA-ASI Advanced Programs senior director Michael Atwood said: “This first-time, industry-funded flight test demonstrates the maturing capabilities of UAS platforms and sensors to deliver fused sensor data.

“Avenger with Legion Pod demonstrates how collaborative autonomous platforms with advanced sensing can deliver persistent, shared air domain awareness.”

Last year, this fusion technology was tested on US Air Force’s F-15C Eagle fighters carrying the pod during the Northern Edge 21 exercise.

Lockheed Martin Sensors and Global Sustainment Advanced Programs director Scott Roberson said: “This is the first time IRST systems on multiple autonomous aircraft have delivered merged air threat data to users on the ground.

“It’s a big step in developing a common operating picture that boosts situational awareness across domains in joint operations.”