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Mon, Oct 24, 2022

Textron Awarded Contract for Shipboard Aerosonde Operation

5th Contract of its Kind Sees Textron Personnel Stationed aboard ESB-5 to provide ISR and UAS Support Underway

Textron Systems has been awarded a contract from the U.S. Navy’s Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) for the provision of Uncrewed Aircraft operational support to the USS Miguel Keith. 

The contract begins in 2023, with a total performance period of 5 years. The Aerosonde UAS system will now be in use on 4 Navy vessels, following a 4-year extension on an existing award to the USS Hershel "Woody" Williams (ESB-5) and 2 additional DDG-class ships. The contract is valued up to $22 million overall, and will see Textron Systems deploy the Aerosonde UAS to "provide extended range intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) services with enhanced mission payloads aboard the ESB-5". The company will station its Field Service Representatives (FSR) on board the ship in order to work alongside the sailors in support of a variety of maritime missions.

The Aerosonde has accumulated more than 585,000 flight hours while serving multiple US and international allies, designed for expeditionary land and sea operations, austere environments, and more. The system can be configured with multiple payloads to meet a range of operational necessities, allowing the Aerosonde to earn its keep aboard the ship as a one-drone-fits-most for most occasions.

“There are numerous vessels of opportunity with the Navy that can benefit from consistent multi-INT ISR,” said Wayne Prender, Senior Vice President of Air Systems at Textron Systems Corp. “Through this fee-for-service contract, the Navy can continue to mature future shipboard ISR requirements while supporting existing real-world missions. We are already seeing the benefits for DDG and ESB- class ships, and we continue to optimize our services to deliver the unique operational and logistical capabilities our customers demand in order to accomplish their mission and keep our sailors safe.”

FMI: www.textron.com

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