New airborne research aircraft debuted by NRL

WASHINGTON. The U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and the Navy's science and technology research squadron, Scientific Development Squadron ONE (VXS-1), recently unveiled the UV-18 “Twin Otter” as the newest addition to the squadron’s fleet of aircraft research platforms.

The UV-18 is the military equivalent of the DeHavilland DHC-6, a high-wing, unpressurized twin-engine turbine-powered aircraft with fixed tricycle landing gear.

VXS-1 is used to provide proof of concept for the latest technologies, as operational fleet commands use it to test in a timely way technological advances to better execute their missions and fill critical capability gaps in their theater. Historically the squadron has supported such research projects as electronic countermeasures, electro-optical and radar research, magnetic variation mapping, hydroacoustic research, and bathymetry.

The fleet of uniquely equipped squadron aircraft carry the tools to provide power, Ethernet, and GPS feeds as required for temporary project installations and to quickly conduct airborne research; the squadron has a self-contained configuration and project shop to assist prospective customers with rack designs, gear installations, and flight clearances.