DOD to cut unmanned aerial vehicle procurement by one third over next decade

By John Keller

ARLINGTON, Va.–The early years of the 21st century have seen explosive growth in U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) purchases of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), but DOD is expected to cut UAV procurement by one-third over the next decade, predict defense industry analysts who are members of the Government Electronics Industry Association (GEIA) segment of the Information Technology Association of America in Arlington, Va.

Pentagon UAV buys should decrease from $3.5 billion in 2009 to $2.6 billion in 2019, GEIA analysts say. This represents a decade-long reduction of 34.6 percent–or a combined annual reduction rate of 3 percent.

From 1999 to 2009, U.S. military UAV procurement grew from $500 million to $3.5 billion–a seven-fold increase that represented an average combined annual growth rate of 21 percent during this period of staggering growth.

Dominating U.S. military UAV procurement in 2009 will be the Global Hawk high-altitude, high-endurance UAV, and the Predator reconnaissance and attack UAV. By 2019, Global Hawk will still be a mainstay of the Pentagon’s UAV purchase plan, to be joined by the Navy’s road Area Maritime Surveillance Unmanned Aircraft System, better-known as BAMS.

Other important military UAV programs by 2019 include the Navy’s Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS-N), the Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle (UCAV), the Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (TUAV), and Predator, GEIA analysts say.

UAVs are not the only area of U.S. military aviation where spending is expected to decrease over the next decade.

DOD will cut overall spending for aircraft acquisition and research over the next decade from $56 billion this year to $42 billion in 2019, GEIA analysts say.

This would represent a decade-long reduction in spending for aircraft structures, avionics, engines, sensors, and other electronics by one-third, according to GEIA analysts. Among the reasons for such a steep decline in military aircraft spending is the expected phaseout or reduction in defense supplemental spending, which funds ongoing military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Projected declines in military aircraft spending parallel overall anticipated reduced or flat spending for U.S. defense in procurement and RDT&E, GEIA analysts say. Over the next decade, military procurement spending is expected to increase only slightly from $101.15 billion to $102.53 billion.

The procurement account is for new ships, aircraft, and combat vehicles, and electronic equipment–as well as for repair and upgrades, which U.S. forces severely need after so many years in Iraq and Afghanistan.

GEIA predicts a decrease in the overall defense RDT&E budget over the next decade from $78.1 billion to $55.54 billion in 2019. That means less for developing new weapons and technologies.

Overall, GEIA predicts the entire defense budget might have an insignificant increase over the next 10 years. The organization’s latest figures have the DOD budget increasing from $491 billion to $534 billion between 2009 and 2019.

Among the reasons for projected stagnant or decreased spending for military procurement and RDT&E are expected hefty increases in military operations and maintenance spending, and for spending to support expected increases in Army and Marine Corps personnel.

GEIA predicts the operations and maintenance account will increase from $167.92 billion to $229.1 billion over the next 10 years. That’s where the fuel costs are, as well as food, clothing, and related expenses.


Easily post a comment below using your Linkedin, Twitter, Google or Facebook account.


The Innovation That Matters™ Quiz

Innovation is one of the key drivers in the Defense industry. View this short video of Leon Woo, VP of Engineering at Mercury Systems, on the role of innovation. Then, answer 3 simple questions correctly to be entered into a drawing to win an Eddie Bauer fleece jacket!

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR TWO MOST RECENT WINNERS. "Nick from SPARWAR" and "Bridget from AOC."


Military & Aerospace Photos

Related Products

API DC Link Power Film Capacitors

High reliability DC link capacitors for power inverter applications which require superior life e...

VPX3-453 3U VPX Virtex-6/8640D Digital Signal Processor

The Curtiss-Wright VPX3-453 is a high performance 3U VPX DSP and FPGA processor card that combine...

UAS, UAV and Ground Based Robot Antennas

Cobham Antenna Systems have designed and developed a range of antennas for use on UAV, UAS and gr...

Related Companies

API Technologies Corp

Who We Are API Technologies is a dominant technology provider of RF/microwave, microelectronics, and security technol...

Extreme Engineering Solutions Inc (X-ES)

 Extreme Engineering Solutions, Inc. (X-ES) is a leader in the design, manufacture, and support of standard and ...

Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions

About Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions (CWCDS) is a long establish...
Wire News provided by   

Most Popular Articles

Webcasts

Meeting the Gen3 backplane challenge with OpenVPX and COTS

Gen3 serial interconnects such as 40G Ethernet, QDR/FDR10 Infiniband, PCIe Gen3 offer significant performance benefits for OpenVPX Systems.  This webcast will outline OpenVPX Signal Integrity challenges...
Sponsored by:

Digital signal processing for signals intelligence and electronic warfare

Military & Aerospace Electronics presents an expert Webcast on the design considerations for blending general-purposes processors (GPUs), general-purpose graphics processors (GPGPUs), field-programmable ...
Sponsored by:

Advantages of Intel Architecture Products and Wind River Solutions in Military & Aerospace Applications

This webinar explains the individual advantages of the Intel Architecture hardware, available for long-life supply, and the WRS software portfolio.  There are extraordinary advantages of combining such ...
Sponsored by:

social activity

All Access Sponsors


Mil & Aero Magazine

February 2014
Volume 25, Issue 2
file

Download Our Apps



iPhone

iPad

Android

Follow Us On...



Newsletters

Military & Aerospace Electronics

Weekly newsletter covering technical content, breaking news and product information
SUBSCRIBE

Defense Executive

Monthly newsletter covering business news and strategic insights for executive managers
SUBSCRIBE

Embedded Computing Report

Monthly newsletter covering news on embedded computing in aerospace, defense and industrial-rugged applications
SUBSCRIBE

Unmanned Vehicles

Monthly newsletter covering news updates for designers of unmanned vehicles
SUBSCRIBE