Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon agrees £100m contract to develop cutting-edge Protector Remotely Piloted Air System especially for RAF.
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. will develop their current drone technology into new cutting-edge unmanned aerial vehicles for use by the Royal Air Force.
Protector will be equipped with the very latest technology, including advanced imaging and enhanced datalink technology. There are also plans for Protector to be armed with UK-made Brimstone 2 missiles and Paveway IV laser-guided bombs.
Sir Michael Fallon is in the US as a keynote speaker at the annual Reagan National Defence Forum, in California, where he will meet US Secretary for Defence Ash Carter and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Dunford.
Speaking at the Forum, the Defence Secretary underlined the enduring strength of Britain’s relationship with the US in defence, security, and innovation. The close collaboration between the two countries on innovative future defence technologies was emphasised recently in a joint agreement to explore the impact that robotic and autonomous systems might have on resupplying the military, with the first demonstration due next October.
Building on our current Unmanned Aerial Vehicle capability, the next-generation Protector will offer improved range and endurance, greater weapons capacity, automated take-off and landing and better resilience against the elements.