US Army Invests US$300m Plus to Maintain Shadow 200 as World’s Leading Capability In TUAV Systems
(Source: BAE Systems; dated Nov. 17, web-posted Nov. 18, 2005)
The Shadow 200 Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (TUAV) System is set to remain at the forefront of battlefield operations and capability with the US Army committing more than US$300M over the next five years to its ongoing evolution and development.

Being offered as part of BAE Systems’ bid for Australia’s JP129, continued investment in the Shadow system offers the Australian Defence Force a low risk, highly-capable solution providing full interoperability with US Forces.

Stephen Birrell, General Manger of BAE Systems said: “The transfer of technology is a key factor to consider. Any improvements the US Army makes to the Shadow will become available to the Australian Defence Force (ADF). This will allow Australia to consider system improvements without undergoing extensive prototyping, testing and final integration activities, ultimately enabling the ADF to maintain a state-of-the-art system at very minimal cost.”

The Shadow 200 is the only solution offered for JP129 Phase 2 to be deployed in a tactical capacity anywhere in the world. It entered service with the US Army in 2001, with full-rate production commencing in 2003. Recognised as the latest in TUAV technology and capability, the system has significantly benefited from its “real-world” use in the combat environment of Iraq over the past 2 years. It has amassed more than 53,000 flight hours in Iraq alone, resulting in the identification of system enhancements and modifications. These enhancements and modifications are encapsulated in a six-month rolling block upgrade ensuring the Shadow 200 is at the leading edge of technology and capability. This ongoing product improvement program is a core component of maintaining the US Army’s tactical battlefield surveillance and target acquisition capability.

BAE Systems is teamed with AAI Corporation, the manufacturer of the Shadow 200, and leading Australian SMEs for the ADF’s TUAV System project, JP129. The team is offering a highly effective TUAV solution, tailored to meet the ADF’s specific requirements.

“BAE Systems’ unrivalled capability in Australia, coupled with the ongoing success of the US Army Shadow TUAV System and the US Army’s ongoing investment in Shadow, confirm the BAE Systems-AAI team as the most capable and lowest risk solution for JP129 now and into the operational future of the ADF’s TUAV capability,” said Stephen.

BAE Systems has major operations across five continents and customers in some 130 countries. The Company employs over 90,000 people and generates annual sales of approximately £14.8 billion through its wholly owned and joint-venture operations. (ends)

A$36.6M Global Centre for Autonomous Systems to Be Based in Victoria
(Source: BAE Systems; dated Nov. 17, web-posted Nov. 18, 2005)
BAE Systems Australia and the Victorian State Government today announced the establishment of a global Centre for Autonomous Systems. This Victorian-based Centre will bring together $36.6m of investment in the rapidly growing Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) market and is expected to create several hundred additional jobs in the State.

The investment includes:

--A$15m invested by BAE Systems to develop its current autonomous systems capability in Australia.
--A$4.8m committed by the Federal Government through the Defence Department’s Capability and Technology Demonstration (CTD) projects.
--A$16.8m new investment by BAE Systems and the Victoria Government to establish new infrastructure, develop export markets and undertake Research and Development (R&D).

The new infrastructure includes:
--Autonomous Systems Design and Development Facility in Melbourne
--Autonomous Systems Integration Laboratory in Melbourne and
--UAV Flight Testing and Trials Facility at West Sale in regional Victoria.

The establishment of a dedicated UAV Flight Testing and Trials Facility at West Sale will be a first for Australia and will attract significant additional investment to regional Victoria. Air Services Australia (AA) and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) have recently approved the requirement to declare the airspace around West Sale as a permanent UAV Operations Area. This facility will also be used by the successful Victorian UAV developer Aerosonde.

The R&D investment will further develop technologies such as:
--Decentralised Data Fusion
--Future UAV for Reconnaissance & Interdiction (FURI)
--Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance Management System (IMS)
--UAV Experimentation System (UES)

Stephen Birrell, General Manager at BAE Systems said: “This investment confirms BAE Systems as Australia’s leading UAV systems company and positions Victoria as a global hub for UAV design, development, integration and testing. This capability directly supports the Australian Defence Force’s (ADF’s) UAV acquisition plans including: JP129 Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (TUAV) System, Air 7000 Multi-mission Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and Air 6000 New Aerospace Combat Capability.

“BAE Systems will also target civil UAV applications including costal surveillance, bush fire detection and search & rescue. We also expect to emulate the export success of our Nulka UAV system by exploiting our technologies in the global UAV market,” added Stephen.


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