The U.S. State Department has approved a $300 million Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to the Government of France for the continuation of MQ-9A Reaper® Contractor Logistics Support (CLS) and related equipment. General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), developer of the MQ-9A Reaper Remotely Piloted Aircraft, is the principal contractor. The follow-on support will enhance the French Air & Space Force (FrASF) fleet of MQ-9s and includes aircraft components, spares and accessories, training equipment and simulator software, as well as capability upgrades to the Predator® Mission Aircrew Training System (PMATS). The CLS contract includes software and software support services, repair and return, U.S. government and contractor provided engineering, technical and logistical support services, and other related critical elements.
“The French Reaper fleet has been a tremendous asset for the FrASF, especially in supporting training and operations in France and Africa,” said Troy Lefever, MQ-9 FMS Branch Chief. “We appreciate the continued support and partnership with GA-ASI.”
“The French Air & Space Force has been an outstanding customer for GA-ASI for many years,” said GA-ASI Senior Director of International FMS Programs Alan Peterson. “We’re pleased to deliver a new level of contractor support for the French MQ-9s.”
The General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper (sometimes called Predator B) is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) capable of remotely controlled or autonomous flight operations developed by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI) primarily for the United States Air Force (USAF). The MQ-9 and other UAVs are referred to as Remotely Piloted Vehicles/Aircraft (RPV/RPA) by the USAF to indicate their human ground controllers. The MQ-9 is a larger, heavier, and more capable aircraft than the earlier General Atomics MQ-1 Predator; it can be controlled by the same ground systems used to control MQ-1s. The Reaper has a 950-shaft-horsepower (712 kW) turboprop engine (compared to the Predator’s 115 hp (86 kW) piston engine). The greater power allows the Reaper to carry 15 times more ordnance payload and cruise at about three times the speed of the MQ-1. The aircraft is monitored and controlled by aircrew in the Ground Control Station (GCS), including weapons employment.
General Atomics-Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), an affiliate of General Atomics, is a leading designer and manufacturer of proven, reliable remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) systems, radars, and electro-optic and related mission systems, including the Predator® RPA series and the Lynx® Multi-mode Radar. With more than seven million flight hours, GA-ASI provides long-endurance, mission-capable aircraft with integrated sensor and data link systems required to deliver persistent flight that enables situational awareness and rapid strike. The company also produces a variety of ground control stations and sensor control/image analysis software, offers pilot training and support services, and develops meta-material antennas. Avenger, Lynx, Predator, SeaGuardian and SkyGuardian are registered trademarks of General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc