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Defence
U.S. approves Certifiable Predator B sale to UK
U.S. approves Certifiable Predator B sale to UK
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| Staff writer 244 mots

U.S. approves Certifiable Predator B sale to UK

The U.S. State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to the UK for General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Certifiable Predator B (CPB) remotely piloted aircraft, equipment, training, and support.

The UK requested a possible sale of up to twenty-six (26) Certifiable Predator Bs (16 with an option for an additional 10 aircraft); and associated equipment, including:

• 12 Advanced Ground Control Stations (GCSs) (8 plus 4 options);

• 25 Multi-spectral Targeting Systems (12 + 2 spares, with an option for 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 an option for 10 + 1 spare);

• 86 Embedded Global Positioning System/Inertial Guidance Units (EGIs) (3 per aircraft) (48 + 5 spares, with an option for 30 + 3 spares).

The total estimated program cost is $1.0 billion.

The UK already operates MQ-9 Reaper armed remotely piloted aircraft, on which the CPB is based.

General Atomics completed CPB aircraft integration in September. Flight testing is scheduled to begin in November.

The Certifiable variant of Predator B is designed to be fully compliant with NATO's UAV System Airworthiness Requirements (defined in STANAG 4671) and the UK's DEFSTAN 00-970.

The company is also developing the Guardian ER maritime version equipped with the a surface search radar centerline pod. Guardian ER is a non-weaponized, maritime Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) CPB variant that will provide maritime and coastal surveillance.

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