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AeroVironment wins US Army FCS contract to modify Raven UAS RF

26 Mar 2021 (Last Updated March 26th, 2021 10:43)

AeroVironment has won a contract to modify the US Army’s existing fleet of Raven tactical unmanned aerial systems’ (UAS) radio frequencies (RF).

AeroVironment wins US Army FCS contract to modify Raven UAS RF
A US Army Soldier hand launches a Raven B UAS in order to have a birds-eye view of the area during a field training exercise at Fort Sill, OK. Credit: US Army / Sgt Dustin D Biven.

AeroVironment has won a contract to modify the US Army’s existing fleet of Raven tactical unmanned aerial systems’ (UAS) radio frequencies (RF).

The contract is the second of three options exercised by the US Army as part of the sole source Flight Control Systems (FCS) domain of the multi-year small UAS contract awarded last month.

Valued at around $20.97m, the latest contract option includes avionics and data link upgrade packages to Raven RF modifications.

The performance period of this contract ends in June next year.

AeroVironment noted that the contract option was exercised under the army’s FCS domain awarded to the company in June 2019.

According to the company, FCS is the first of the six domains comprising the US Army’s existing five-year indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) SUAS contract. It has a potential value of nearly $55m.

The hand-launched Raven UAS is designed to conduct low-altitude intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions.

Weighing just 1.9kg with a wingspan of 4.5ft, Raven provides situational awareness during at day or at night.

The Raven’s ‘Mantis i23 EO/IR gimbaled payload’ delivers real-time video/IR imagery to ‘ground control and remote viewing stations’.

Recently, AeroVironment secured a contract to deliver its Puma All Environment (AE) tactical UAS to an undisclosed European country.

AeroVironment small UAS vice-president and product line general manager Trace Stevenson said: “The US Army possesses the largest fleet of Raven small unmanned aircraft systems in the world.

“For more than a decade, Raven systems have provided frontline soldiers with increased mission effectiveness, safety and situational awareness so they can proceed with certainty.”

Last month, AeroVironment purchased high-performance UAS manufacturer Arcturus UAV in a transaction valued at around $405m.