Unmanned aircraft systems (UASs) manufacturer AeroVironment has announced the receipt of contract awards from the US Army for Switchblade tactical missile systems and services.
The contracts involve the procurement of Switchblade lethal miniature aerial missile system (LMAMS) and contractor logistics support (CLS).
This will take the total value of AeroVironment’s Switchblade contract awards to $111.05m since August last year.
Of the total contracts value, Switchblade hardware awards is $67.76m, while the Switchblade CLS awards is $43.29m, covering three years of services.
The awards, for which $78.09m has been funded, will be managed by the US Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal.
Funded through Urgent Need Statements, the contracts include the first Switchblade order from the US Marine Corps (USMC).
AeroVironment UAS Business Segment vice-president and general manager Kirk Flittie said: “Switchblade is a highly effective and mature smart weapon system that delivers unmatched force protection and precision strike capabilities to American forces with minimal to no collateral effects.
“Man-portable and lightweight, Switchblade is a uniquely powerful LMAMS solution for today’s complex combat environments.”
Designed for use by the US Armed Forces, the Switchblade provides warfighters with rapid-response force protection and exact strike capabilities up to 10km from the launch location.
With speeds ranging between 55kt and 85kt, and an endurance of ten minutes, the Switchblade platform is capable of providing a powerful, but expendable miniature flying intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) package on a beyond line-of-sight (BLOS) target within minutes.
The high-precision, specialised effects and wave-off capability of Switchblade enables it to either minimise or eliminate collateral damage.