01/10/2020

US Air Force adds vendors to list of companies that will compete for the Skyborg UAS

US Air Force adds vendors to list of companies that could make autonomous Skyborg drone – link

Source: Defense News

Article Headlines
  • The U.S. Air Force has added nine vendors to the list of companies that will compete to build the service’s autonomous Skyborg drone wingman
  • On Sept. 28, the service awarded each firm an indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract worth up to $400 million
  • The nine companies were AeroVironment Inc., Autodyne LLC, BAE System Controls Inc., Blue Force Technologies Inc., Fregata Systems Inc., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company, NextGen Aeronautics Inc., Sierra Technical Services, and Wichita State University
  • Those organizations join Northrop Grumman, Boeing, General Atomics and Kratos, which won the first round of contracts in July
  • No money has been allotted to vendors so far. Instead, the 13 companies on contract will compete against each other for future delivery orders
  • Skyborg is one of the lab’s top three science and technology efforts. The project is meant to produce a family of unmanned aerial systems that can move into contested airspaces and conduct aerial missions that might be too dangerous for human pilots to perform.
  • Under the Skyborg program, the Air Force hopes to build a low-cost, attritable drone that can be reused but — if destroyed in combat — is cheap enough to be written off without incurring a large material loss
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