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US oks a $1Bn FMS from UK for up to 26 Certifiable Predator B RPAS

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World Aviation Defense & Security News - United Kingdom
 
 
US oks a $1Bn FMS from UK for up to 26 Certifiable Predator B RPAS
 
The United States State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to the United Kingdom for Certifiable Predator B Remotely Piloted Aircraft, equipment, training, and support, for an estimated cost of $1.0 billion, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announced on November 16, 2016.
     
US clears a 1Bn FMS from UK for up to 26 Certifiable Predator B RPAS 640 001An artistic rendering of the GA-ASI Certifiable Predator B RPAS
(Credit: GA-ASI)
     
The United Kingdom requested a possible sale of up to 26 Certifiable Predator B Remotely Piloted Aircraft (16 with option for additional 10); 12 Advanced Ground Control Stations (GCSs) (8 with option for additional 4); four (4) New Launch and Recovery Element GCSs; 4 Upgrades to existing Blk 15 Launch and Recovery Element GCSs (2 with option for additional 2); 25 Multi-spectral Targeting Systems (12 + 2 spares, with option for additional 10 + 1 spare); 25 AN/APY-8 Lynx IIe Block 20A Synthetic Aperture Radar and Ground Moving Target Indicators (SAR/GMTI) (12+ 2 spares, with option for additional 10 + 1 spare); 86 Embedded Global Positioning System/Inertial Guidance Units (EGIs) (3 per aircraft) (48 + 5 spares, with option for additional 30 + 3 spares).

This sale also includes communications equipment, Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) equipment; weapons installation kits; TPE331-10YGD engines; unique and common spares package; support equipment; U.S. Air Force technical orders; country specific technical orders; Contractor Logistics Support for two (optional three) years; contractor provided aircraft components, spares, and accessories; personnel training; and other related elements of logistical and program support. The total estimated program cost is $1.0 billion.

"This sale will improve the UK’s ability to meet current and future threats by providing improved Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) coverage that enhances homeland security, promotes increased battlefield situational awareness, augments combat search and rescue, and provides ground troop support. The Certifiable Predator B will also be used to support the UK’s armed forces and coalition forces engaged in current and future peacekeeping, peace-enforcing, counter-insurgent, and counterterrorism operations. The UK already operates armed remotely piloted aircraft, the MQ-9 Reaper," the DSCA said.

The Certifiable Predator B is a variant of the Predator B Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) which will initially meet NATO standards (STANAG-4671) in 2017, and in cooperation with the FAA will subsequently meet domestic airworthiness certification standards.