Posted by Courtney E. Howard
MONROVIA, Calif., 29 Dec. 2010. AeroVironment Inc. (AV) won a $46,226,984 order under an existing contract with the U.S. Army. The order comprises 123 new digital Raven small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and initial spares packages, as well as 186 digital retrofit kits for the U.S. Marine Corps. The order also includes 339 digital retrofit kits for the U.S. Army.
The Raven system and retrofit order represents the remainder of the funds appropriated for RQ-11B Raven system procurement in the 2010 Department of Defense Appropriations Act, signed into law in December 2009.
The orders were released under the existing U.S. Army joint small UAS program of record for AV’s Raven. The program has included contract additions from the Army, Marine Corps, and Special Operations Command. Work is scheduled to be performed within a period of 12 months.
“Raven systems have proven their value and reliability to military services across the U.S. Department of Defense,” says Tom Herring, AV senior vice president and general manager, unmanned aircraft systems. “These backpackable, hand-launched unmanned systems provide situational awareness directly to our warfighters, increasing mission effectiveness and safety.”
The 4.2-pound Raven unmanned aircraft provides day and night, real-time video imagery for "over the hill" and "around the corner" reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition in support of tactical units. Each Raven system typically consists of three aircraft, two ground control stations, and spares.