NAVAIR inks $24.3 million in contract mods for unmanned aerial drone systems

NAVAL AIR SYSTEMS COMMAND, PATUXENT RIVER, Md. The U.S. Naval Air Systems Command has signed a $24.3 million contract modification with Kratos Defense & Security Solutions' Unmanned Systems Division (USD) to exercise an option for the low-rate initial production of the Subsonic Aerial Target BQM-177A and technical data.

Under the terms of the contract modification, Kratos USD will supply NAVAIR with multiple BQM-177A targets, associated altimeters, technical manuals, training material/equipment, and contractor logistics support services  Work under the contract -- to be performed in Sacramento, California -- is expected to be completed by March 2020.

According to Kratos materials, the BQM-177A is used in air-to-air engagements and in highly dynamic, high-subsonic, sea-skimming antiship cruise missile threat emulation. The unmanned aerial drone is capable of speeds in excess of 0.95 Mach while carrying internal and external payloads including proximity scoring, (IFF), passive and active , electronic countermeasures, infrared (IR) augmentation (plume pods), chaff and flare dispensers, and towed targets.