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UK To Buy MQ-9 Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

An MQ-9 UAV.
by Staff Writers
Washington DC (SPX) Oct 03, 2006
The Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified Congress of a possible Foreign Military Sale to the United Kingdom of MQ-9 Unmanned Aerial Vehicles as well as associated equipment and services. The total value, if all options are exercised, could be as high as $77 million.

The Government of the United Kingdom has requested a possible sale of two MQ-9 Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) aircraft, one Ground Control Station, two Multi-Spectral Targeting Systems, one Mobile Ground Control Station, two Lynx Synthetic Aperture Radar (airborne), Ku-Band Communications spares, Lynx Synthetic Aperture Radar Spares, engineering support, test equipment, ground support, operational flight test support, communications equipment, technical assistance, personnel training/equipment, spare and repair parts, and other related elements of logistics support. The estimated cost is $77 million.

The United Kingdom is a major political and economic power in NATO and the Atlantic and a key democratic partner of the United States in ensuring peace and stability in this region and around the world.

The United Kingdom requests these capabilities to provide for the defense of deployed troops, regional security, and interoperability with the U.S.. This program will increase the United Kingdom's ability to contribute to future NATO, coalition, and anti-terrorism operations that the U.S. may undertake.

The United Kingdom is a staunch supporter of the U.S. in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the Global War on Terror. United Kingdom troops are deployed in support of Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, where U.S. assets currently provide this proposed capability. By acquiring this capability, the United Kingdom will be able to provide the same level of protection for its own forces and those of the U.S..

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not affect the basic military balance in the region and the United Kingdom will have no difficulty absorbing these aircraft into its armed forces.

The principal contractors will be:

- General Atomics Aeronautical Systems San Diego, California
- Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems El Segundo, California
- General Atomics Lynx Systems San Diego, California

There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale. Implementation of this proposed sale will not require the assignment of any U.S. Government or contractor representatives to the United Kingdom.

There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

This notice of a potential sale is required by law; it does not mean that the sale has been concluded.

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U.S. researchers say they are creating an intelligent airborne fleet of small, unmanned vehicles for military use. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology scientists and their colleagues at the Georgia Institute of Technology and the Boeing Phantom Works in Seattle say such unmanned aerial vehicles would require little human supervision and could automatically monitor their own condition.

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