Lockheed Martin's new VCSi software allows operators to simultaneously control dozens of unmanned vehicles

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On Feb. 20, Lockheed Martin announced the launch of its new vehicle control software, VCSi, which is a commercial software that enables operators to simultaneously control dozens of unmanned vehicles and conduct information, surveillance and reconnaissance missions.

VCSi will be unveiled during the Unmanned Systems Exhibition and Conference in Abu Dhabi this month, and according to Lockheed, it has several major enhancements.

Among its many enhancements, VCSi is intuitive, as Lockheed Martin “further advanced its fly-by-mouse interface to enable easier training and reduce operator/analyst task loads,”; it is modular, as it offers a “robust plug-in architecture, which allows for custom content to be added by the user or selected from pre-existing modules,”; and, it is affordable, as it is “priced competitively with all unmanned systems in mind,” allowing customers to buy essential modules for their mission set.

“VCSi is a safe and reliable software platform that can be adapted to any vehicle – from one you can hold in your hand, to a 50,000-pound machine; from a vehicle that flies for a few minutes, to a vehicle that flies for months at a time,” says John Molberg, business development manager, Lockheed Martin CDL Systems.

“The user can integrate as many vehicles as required to complete their missions, including boats, quadcopters, fixed-wing aircraft or even high-altitude pseudo satellites. Across commercial or military missions, VCSi is adaptable to the challenge and further extends the power of the human-machine team.”

VCSi is designed around the NATO Standardization Agreement—known as STANAG 4586—which supports unmanned vehicle interoperability. To customize the VCSi software, customers can build attachments or plug-ins beyond 4586. The VCSi software supports several languages and non-Latin scripts.

VCSi provides advanced 3D visualization of vehicles and airspace, and Lockheed says that it is “at the forefront of integration into unmanned traffic management systems.”