UCAVs for the Hard Stuff

Gen. Michael Moseley acknowledges that he is a fan of unmanned combat air vehicles, but he does not see them replacing fighters in the air-to-air role for quite some time. However, the Air Force Chief of Staff told defense reporters, “I do see UCAVs that can penetrate a fifth-generation weapons array” in the not-too-distant future. The threat he described is that posed by an air defense system employing so-called “double-digit” surface-to-air radars and missiles. Moseley likes UCAVs because they can stay on station a long time. The only limiting factor in a UCAV’s dwell time is the oil in its engine, a restriction easily solved by adding a bigger oil reservoir, he said.