Air Force orders 24 MQ-9 Reaper hunter-killer UAVs in $148.3 million contract award
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio, 3 Feb. 2011. Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) designers at General Atomics Aeronautical Systems in Poway, Calif., will provide the U.S. Air Force with 24 MQ-9 Reaper hunter-killer UAVs under terms of a $148.3 million contract awarded Wednesday from the Air Force Aeronautical Systems Center (ASC) at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.
The MQ-9 system includes aircraft, ground control station, communications equipment, spare parts, and crew, which consists of maintenance personnel, pilot, and sensor operator. Among its sensors is the Raytheon AN/AAS-52 multi-spectral targeting sensor suite with color/monochrome daylight TV, infrared sensor, and image-intensified TV with laser rangefinder and target designator. The Reaper's synthetic aperture radar helps with JDAM targeting, and can detect and track moving targets on the ground.