U.K. Ministry of Defence selects Certifiable Predator B Reaper for Royal Air Force

FARNBOROUGH, England, 11 July 2016. The U.K. Ministry of Defence has selected the Certifiable Predator B (CPB) remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) with some specific modifications from General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), a manufacturer of RPA, radar, electro-optic, and related mission systems to fulfill the country’s future armed intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance (ISTAR) requirements.

U.K. Ministry of Defence selects Certifiable Predator B Reaper for Royal Air Force
U.K. Ministry of Defence selects Certifiable Predator B Reaper for Royal Air Force

FARNBOROUGH, England, 11 July 2016. The U.K. Ministry of Defence has selected the Certifiable Predator B (CPB) remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) with some specific modifications from General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), a manufacturer of RPA, radar, electro-optic, and related mission systems to fulfill the country’s future armed intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance (ISTAR) requirements.

“GA-ASI is proud to offer CPB, the next-generation Predator B, to the Ministry of Defence to satisfy its emerging requirements for a Reaper replacement certified so that it will be capable, subject to developments in regulatory framework, to operate within unsegregated controlled airspace,” says David R. Alexander, president, Aircraft Systems, GA-ASI. “Featuring enhanced safety and reliability systems, CPB will meet European airworthiness certification standards.”

U.K. Ministry of Defence selects Certifiable Predator B Reaper for Royal Air ForceU.K. Ministry of Defence selects Certifiable Predator B Reaper for Royal Air Force

The Ministry of Defence’s selection of CPB follows the 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review and the Prime Minister’s announcement of the government’s intention to replace Predator B/MQ-9 Reaper.

CPB has been down-selected as the only viable option capable of meeting the UK PROTECTOR program’s key user requirements, including operations in both controlled and uncontrolled airspace. The U.K.’s CPB procurement will occur through a hybrid Foreign Military Sales/Direct Commercial Sale agreement with the U.S. government.

GA-ASI is undertaking an Independent Research and Development (IRAD) effort to design, develop, and produce CPB, a variant of its Predator B RPA that is compliant with NATO’s UAV System Airworthiness Requirements (STANAG 4671).

Construction of CPB has begun, with fuselage integration currently underway, followed by wings and tails integration planned for late summer 2016. Flight testing of the CPB airframe is scheduled for late 2016.

GA-ASI and NLR partner to facilitate RPA integration in European airspaceGA-ASI and NLR partner to facilitate RPA integration in European airspace

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc., an affiliate of General Atomics, delivers situational awareness by providing remotely piloted aircraft systems, radars, and electro-optic and related mission systems solutions for military and commercial applications worldwide.

The company’s Aircraft Systems business unit is a designer and manufacturer of proven, reliable, RPA systems, including Predator A, Predator B/MQ-9 Reaper, Gray Eagle, the new Predator C Avenger, and Predator XP. It also manufactures a variety of state-of-the-art digital Ground Control Stations (GCS), including the next-generation Advanced Cockpit GCS, and provides pilot training and support services for RPA field operations.

The Mission Systems business unit designs, manufactures, and integrates the Lynx Multi-mode Radar and sophisticated Claw sensor control and image analysis software into both manned and remotely piloted aircraft. It also focuses on providing integrated sensor payloads and software for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft platforms and develops high energy lasers, electro-optic sensors, and meta-material antennas.

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