L3Harris Technologies and Air Tractor have teamed to produce the AT-802U Sky Wardenâ„¢, an affordable, production-ready aircraft designed for airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) and other missions in extreme combat environments. The multi-mission platform provides the operator agility and flexibility to identify, track and react to counter threats. It merges the capabilities of larger ISR and armed aircraft into one resilient package. It is also capable of takeoff and landing on unimproved airstrips â€“ allowing the aircraft to be deployed and co-located with special mission operators.
Sky Warden is based on the rugged and capable Air Tractor AT-802, which features the largest payload capacity of any single engine turboprop aircraft. It hosts L3Harris’ world-class family of communications, sensors and airborne ISR solutions. The platform is backed by the company’s extensive turnkey ISR operation experience. Sky Warden’s name commemorates two best-in-class, multi-mission special operations combat platforms. It merges the deep history of the Vietnam era A-1E Sky Raider with the present-day U-28, which uses the callsign “Warden” during combat operations. Sky Warden combines their heritage and capabilities to collapse the stack, providing one aircraft capable of multiple mission roles.
“Our mission systems, platforms, direct operators and sustainment teams have supported more than 1.3 million combat hours of special operations ISR and attack missions in the past 10 years,” said Luke Savoie, President, Aviation Services, L3Harris. “Combining that experience with Air Tractor, one of the largest turboprop aircraft OEMs in the world, enables our team to design and provide a mature platform capable of operating anywhere in the world and provides the tools needed to support any mission.”
Air Tractor aircraft were developed precisely to operate in austere environments with limited infrastructure,” said Jim Hirsch, President, Air Tractor, Inc. “Our aircraft are built to offer unparalleled flexibility, essential ingredients for special mission operators.”
Air Tractor is a leading manufacturer of purpose-built aircraft for agricultural, firefighting, and utility applications. Air Tractor aircraft can be found in more than 30 countries around the world and are supported by a global network of Air Tractor dealers. Air Tractor delivered its 4,000th aircraft in March 2021 and has manufactured aircraft for 46 years. L3Harris Technologies is an agile global aerospace and defense technology innovator, delivering end-to-end solutions that meet customers’ mission-critical needs. The company provides advanced defense and commercial technologies across air, land, sea, space and cyber domains. L3Harris has approximately $18 billion in annual revenue and 48,000 employees, with customers in more than 100 countries.