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Athena Technologies Guidance and Navigation System Selected Watchkeeper UAV Program

File image of the UAV Watchkeeper
by Staff Writers
Warrenton VA (SPX) Jan 19, 2007
Athena Technologies, Inc. today announced its GuideStar, a compact, integrated inertial navigation system, global positioning system (INS/GPS) and air data sensor suite, has been selected to provide redundant systems for the UK Watchkeeper Tactical UAV Program (the largest Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Program in Europe).

An important program for British Armed Forces, Watchkeeper will provide an essential Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) capability. Watchkeeper will provide day and night service during times of war or tension, providing critical information to protect troops.

The UK Ministry of Defence awarded the Watchkeeper contract worth GBP700M ($1.2B) to a team led by Thales UK in 2005.

"We are honored to have won such a ground breaking UAV program as the navigation elements for Watchkeeper," said Dr. David Vos, Athena's CEO. "Being selected to contribute to the UK's Tactical UAV program is a testament to our products and capabilities. With well over 100,000 flight hours and proven performance at a low lifecycle cost on many different UAV platforms, the GuideStar brings unique value to the program," he added.

Related Links
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Enhanced Fire Scout Makes Flight Debut
Patuxent River MD (SPX) Jan 15, 2007
The U.S. Navy's MQ-8B Fire Scout unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) made its first flight last month at the Webster Field annex of Patuxent River Naval Air Station in St. Inigoes, Md. The Navy's vertical takeoff and landing tactical UAV (VTUAV) system was originally dubbed the RQ-8A, but during the summer of 2005, was re-designated to the MQ-8B to reflect the Fire Scout's evolution toward an increased, multi-functional role. The test events marked the first flight of the enhanced variant.

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