Defence and engineering solutions provider Leidos has been contracted to design, produce, integrate and test the US Army’s Airborne Reconnaissance Low-Enhanced (ARL-E) programme.

The ARL-E is an all-weather airborne platform that accurately detects, locates, classifies and identifies surface targets.

"The selection of our team on this contract solidifies our standing as leaders in ISR capabilities."

Under the $661.8m contract, Leidos will modify Bombardier DHC-8 aircraft used for intelligence, and will also provide the system of systems (SoS) integration of an extendable mission equipment payload (MEP) to the army.

The Bombardier DHC-8 is a fixed-wing patrol aircraft normally used for surveillance operations.

The aircraft has a range of 1,600 nautical miles, and is capable of reaching a maximum speed of 242k.

Leidos will collaborate with Sierra Nevada Corporation, Argon ST, L-3 ComCept, and Dynamic Aviation.

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It will reduce production costs using a flexible open architecture that is expected to integrate future upgrades and promote growth.

Leidos president John Fratamico said: "The selection of our team on this contract solidifies our standing as leaders in ISR capabilities.

"We remain dedicated to supporting our customer and providing mission effective technology at a competitive price.