What Is Joint Precision Airdrop?

A precision airdrop is simply a science and technology effort directed at increasing cargo airdrop accuracy and survivability from high altitudes. U.S. military services have combined resources in an effort to pursue the Joint Precision Airdrop System (JPADS). JPADS integrates the Army’s Extended Glide Airdrop System (PEGASYS) with the Air Force’s Precision Airdrop System (PADS). Development for the collaborative effort of JPADS now resides in the Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM), Natick Soldier Center (NSC).

The Joint Precision Airdrop System (JPADS) is a high-altitude, all-weather capable, global positioning system-guided, precision airdrop system that provides increased cargo control upon release from the aircraft.

Joint precision airdrop capability focuses on air vehicles (ex. a decelerator or canopy) that are sized to accommodate 2,328, 10,000, 30,000 or 600,00 fully-rigged weigh increments.

What Is PADS-MP?

PADS-MP is the Precision Aerial Delivery System Mission Planner. The purpose of Mission Planner equipment and software is to efficiently and effectively minimize the ground impact error, relative to the planned Point of Impact (IP). In short, the PADS-MP is used to accurately deliver airdrop materials to a designated drop zone.

The PADS-MP is a laptop computer based system that is designated for airdrop planning and mission execution. PADS-MP enables operation of a temporarily installed, onboard atmospheric dropsonde reception system to be used for real-time wind data measurement deployed near the Drop Zone. (DZ). The dropsonde can be deployed from either the airdrop aircraft or from an alternative dropsonde platform.

The latest version of PADS-MP provides significant improvements and enhancements, which include:

  • New PADS Graphical User Interface (GUI).
  • Automatically acquires dropsonde files.
  • Automatically starts and completes wind file production when the PADS Operator, selects “Compute Carp” option.
  • Implements business rule validation to enforce that all loads in a release pass share the same exit strategy and main parachute type.