The French Navy has placed an additional order for a fleet of Survey Copter Aliaca light tactical uncrewed aerial systems (UAS) for maritime surveillance, according to Airbus Defense and Space.
Survey Copter—an Airbus subsidiary— signed a firm order with the French Defense Procurement Agency (DGA) for 15 onboard systems (30 aircraft) of Aliaca fixed-wing electric UAS, plus associated training and integrated logistics support for the French Navy, the company announced Monday. The company said deliveries of the systems will begin this year and “will be used to equip new ships and ship types, and to enhance their onboard capabilities.”
The request builds upon a 2020 order of 11 systems and 22 aircraft that have been called the French Navy’s “remote field glasses” due to their ability to provide airborne surveillance, detection, and identification capabilities for high seas patrol boats and surveillance frigates, according to the company.
“We are very honored to participate in the French government’s action at sea and to continue supporting the French Navy in its many missions,” said Christophe Canguilhem, CEO of Survey Copter, in a statement. “This additional order confirms the relationship of trust we have with the DGA and the French Navy, and the quality, efficiency, and reliability of our drones systems at sea.”
The order is the latest for Airbus, which late last year announced it was launching a business line dedicated to military drones. In January, Airbus also announced its intent to acquire Aerovel, the manufacturer of the Flexrotor tactical drone.
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