Advertisement

You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

AF plans to pick third-generation UAV by 2012

May. 18, 2009 - 06:18PM   |   Last Updated: May. 18, 2009 - 06:18PM  |  
  • Filed Under

The Air Force is already looking at a third generation of armed remote-control planes even as it continues to build up its fleet of MQ-1 Predators and MQ-9 Reapers.

  • Please enable JavaScript for your browser in order to use airforcetimes.com.com.
Want to read more?
Current Subscribers
Access to Air Force Times Prime is free for current Air Force Times subscribers.
Log in
Haven't registered online?
Activate Account
New Subscribers
Start your subscription to Air Force Times Prime for as little as 59¢ a week!
Subscribe

The Air Force is already looking at a third generation of armed remote-control planes even as it continues to build up its fleet of MQ-1 Predators and MQ-9 Reapers.

The service has started an analysis of alternatives for the next unmanned aerial vehicle, dubbed the MQ-X, with the goal of choosing a plane in 2012, Lt. Gen. Mark Shackelford told reporters Friday.

The Air Force wants enough Predators and Reapers to fly 50 around-the-clock patrols over Iraq and Afghanistan. There are now enough planes to fly 35 patrols, including one patrol by RQ-4 Global Hawks.

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems builds Reapers and Predators. Because of the drive to deploy the planes, the Air Force and Defense Department did not put the project up for open bidding, instead depending on General Atomics' expertise.

Shackelford, one of the service's top acquisition officials, told reporters that developing and building the MQ-X likely will be open to all bidders.

"We would like to have competition as we go into the MX-Q," he said.

General Atomics has already unveiled a jet-powered UAV called the Avenger, able to fly at 460 mph — about twice as fast as the Reaper — and carry 3,000 pounds of weapons and sensors.

Answers by RallyPoint

Join trending discussions in the military's #1 professional community. See what members like yourself have to say from across the DoD.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan
Rates

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.


This Week's Air Force Times

This Week's Air Force Times

CrossFit vs. unit PT
Troops will do the training plans in a $2.5 million study

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

Classifieds
MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.
Woman who cried rape
(3 replies)
   Last Post: TJMAC77SP
        May 3, 2014 1:32 PM
   Last Post: garhkal
        May 1, 2014 5:03 PM
Cliven Bundy
(45 replies)
   Last Post: Chief_KO
        Apr 26, 2014 9:49 AM
Handbooks

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook