AeroVironment, Inc. a global leader in unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), announced it secured a $5,922,461 firm-fixed-price U.S. Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales (FMS) contract award on December 22, 2020 to provide Pumaâ„¢ 3 AE tactical UAS, training and support to a European allied nation. AeroVironment’s family of tactical UAS comprises the majority of all unmanned aircraft in the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) inventory, and its rapidly growing international customer base numbers more than 50 allied governments. Delivery is anticipated by April 2021.
The AeroVironment Puma 3 AE unmanned aircraft system is designed for land and maritime operations. The hand-launched Puma 3 AE has a wingspan of 9.2 feet, weighs 15 pounds and can operate for up to 2.5 hours. The aircraft also has a range of 12.4 miles (20 kilometers) with a standard antenna, and up to 37.2 miles (60 kilometers) with AeroVironment’s Long-Range Tracking Antenna (LRTA). It also features reduced system packaging with a flyable configuration and GCS in one case. Capable of landing in water or on land, the all-environment Puma 3 AE and Mantis i45 EO/IR sensor suite empower operators with extended flight time and a level of imaging capability never before available in the tactical UAS class.
“Puma 3 AE offers allied forces an unparalleled perspective of tactical environments, increasing situational awareness and minimizing exposure to possible threats on land or at sea,” said Rick Pedigo, vice president of business development and sales at AeroVironment. “With the help of AeroVironment’s tactical unmanned aircraft systems, like Puma 3 AE, customers are able to increase the mission effectiveness and safety of their frontline forces, even in the most extreme environments.”
AeroVironment’s portfolio of intelligent, multi-domain robotic systems includes small footprint, runway-independent unmanned aircraft systems. The JUMP 20, T-20 and Pumaâ„¢ LE provide extended range, multi-payload capabilities, and the Pumaâ„¢ RQ-20, RavenÂ® RQ-11B, WaspÂ® RQ-12A, VAPORÂ® Helicopter and automated Quantixâ„¢ Recon deliver highly tactical, frontline situational awareness. These solutions deliver increased, multi-mission capabilities and the option of selecting the appropriate aircraft based on the type of mission to be performed. These capabilities have the potential to provide significant force protection and force multiplication benefits to small tactical units and security personnel, as well as greater safety, scalability and cost-savings to commercial operators.