Unmanned Air Systems Sector

The Unmanned Air Systems sector collects together inputs that are specific to unmanned air systems. Inputs that can equally be applied to piloted aircraft should be entered in the standard input sectors.

UAS General

The UAS General tab contains general inputs related to ground stations and other systems or activities that are specific to unmanned air systems. The general ground station inputs relate to the number of aircraft per ground system, ground system operating hours and ground station disposal costs. The annual profile table also includes some other ground station related costs. Other general costs relate to items such as satellite costs, IT infrastructure, packaging/handling/storage and transportation.

It is possible to use some of the inputs on this tab for manned air system if they are relevant. For instance, some manned platforms incur satellite costs.

Unmanned Air Systems - General

Unmanned Air Systems General tab

The input UA1 UAVs per Ground Station (Aircraft/GS) is a driver of a number of the other inputs in the sector. If a value of 0 aircraft per ground station is entered then any inputs that are directly related will be disabled. In addition, there will be no Unscheduled or Scheduled GS Maintenance actions generated.

UA1 UAVs per Ground Station (Aircraft/GS) is used to determine the introduction and retirement profile of ground stations, based on the introduction and retirement of aircraft. When performing calculations the OSCAM simulation will always round up to the nearest whole number of ground stations. The simulation will also look forward at the aircraft introduction profile so that if aircraft retirements or attrition occurs, the ground stations will only be retired if they are not required for future aircraft introductions.

Most operational costs that are driven by the number of ground stations will use the number of aircraft required in environments along with the UAVs per Ground Station input in order to determine the number of ground stations in use. Ground stations that are associated with aircraft in the Excess Inventory or in downtime due to maintenance will not be included in those calculations

Ground Station Operating Hours can be specified as annual hours per ground station and/or related to aircraft hours. These can be used as a driver of satellite costs and also used to drive Unscheduled and Scheduled Ground Station Maintenance.

Satellite costs can be specified in a variety of ways, with a fixed cost per year, annual cost per ground station or cost per ground station operating hour. IT Infrastructure cost is a fixed cost per year.

A number of the costs represented by input boxes can also be specified in an annual profile table, along with some other costs that appear only in the profile table. For example, costs for GS Depot Maintenance, GS Software Maintenance, and Packaging/Handling/Storage can only be entered via the annual profile table.

Unscheduled and Scheduled Ground Station Maintenance

The Unscheduled GS Maintenance and Scheduled GS Maintenance tabs have the same layout and concepts. They are similar to the Aircraft and Engine Unscheduled and Scheduled Maintenance tabs in the Maintenance Sector. The key difference from those tabs is that costs or action rates are generated based on Ground Station operating hours or an annual rate per ground station.

Each tab has a Simplified or Detailed option that can be set using the radio buttons at the top. In Simplified mode, the DLR and O-Level consumables and I-Level consumables costs per ground station operating hour can be specified on the left-hand side, while these same cost can be specified per ground station per year on the right-hand side. Cost Growth Factor curves can be specified for DLR costs and consumables costs that allow factors on the baseline costs to be specified for each year of the program. There is an annual cost profile table for the DLR and O-Level consumables and I-Level consumables costs, which is not affected by the cost growth factors.

Unmanned Air Systems - Simplified Unscheduled Ground Station Maintenance

Unmanned Air Systems Simplified Unscheduled Maintenance tab

In Detailed mode, the rate of actions is defined using either actions per 1000 GS operating hours and/or an annual rate per ground station. An action requires O-Level labor to remove/replace the component. The percentages of parts that are Repaired at O-Level, Repaired at I-Level and Depot Repair/Replace can be specified. The percentage for False Removal is automatically calculated so that all four percentages add to 100%. If data is specified so that the percentages add to more than 100% then the text of the inputs will turn red, and it will not be possible to run the simulation until the problem is corrected.

Consumables costs and labor hours are specified for any repairs that are carried out at O-Level or I-Level. Repair Parts cost and Repair/Replace cost are specified for I-Level Repair and Depot respectively. A False Removal cost is specified for any False Removals.

Unmanned Air Systems - Detailed Unscheduled Ground Station Maintenance

Unmanned Air Systems Detailed Unscheduled Maintenance tab

Aging curves for action rates and DLR and consumables costs can be applied to Unscheduled and Scheduled maintenance. These can be specified as table values or as quadratic functions.

Unmanned Air Systems - Cost Growth Factor graph

Unmanned Air Systems cost growth factor graph, populated using annual table values

When table values are used for aging, the aging actions factor is expressed as a percentage of aircraft life, with values at every 5% of life. The DLR and consumables cost growth factor are expressed over time for the program with a value representing each year, over a 70 year period. All factor values can be entered either in the table on the left-hand side of the screen, or by holding down the Shift button and moving the cursor across the screen in order to draw the aging curve.

When quadratic equations are used for aging, the action rates factor uses aircraft age as the X variable. The DLR and consumables growth factors use years since the first year that an aircraft can enter service is the X variable. The quadratic equation allows A, B and C parameters to be specified for an equation of the form: Ax^2 + Bx + C. There is also the option to specify the factor as a linear equation, where A is automatically set as 0, C is specified as 1 and B is editable. When the equation parameters are set, clicking on the Display button will show the function on the graph.