TUCSON, Ariz. , May 12, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) has teamed with Swift Engineering, Inc. to provide the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps with an unmanned aircraft system for their respective Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft Systems and Tier 2 missions.
Raytheon leads the team and offers aircraft and mission systems integration with connectivity to the customers' combat systems and command and control systems. Swift Engineering, based in San Clemente, Calif. , is providing its innovative KillerBee unmanned aerial vehicle.
KillerBee has the ability to insert persistent intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) into the battlespace and rapidly deliver actionable intelligence to combatant commanders. Raytheon Missile Systems leads the integrated team, which includes other Raytheon business units for the ground control system, C4ISR integration, and Mission Support, plus the efforts of Swift Engineering and Optical Alchemy.
"KillerBee offers the warfighter an affordable unmanned aircraft system, and the Swift Engineering vehicle has both longer endurance and the ability to carry a larger payload," said Ken Pedersen , Raytheon vice president of Advanced Programs. "The Raytheon team is using proven, existing technology, so KillerBee can be fielded in the near term."
The Swift Engineering blended wing body design sets KillerBee apart from similar sized unmanned aerial vehicles and is designed to operate ashore or aboard ships with a minimal footprint.
The KillerBee Ground Control System will leverage the benefits of Raytheon's Tactical Control System while incorporating advancements realized from the development of Raytheon's Multi-Vehicle Control System The GCS can simultaneously control multiple, dissimilar vehicles and is based on standard NATO architecture, providing vehicle flight control and a visual presentation of flight data.
"Raytheon has more than 35 years of unmanned aircraft system command and control expertise dating back to the Vietnam War," said Mark Bigham , director of business development for Raytheon's Intelligence and Information Systems business. "With the KillerBee Ground Control System and our expertise in video dissemination capabilities, we will deliver a new level of situation awareness and targeting to the warfighter."
Repeated air and ground testing has demonstrated that KillerBee outperforms any vehicle in its class, validating control, processing and display functions, and demonstrating its suitability as a solution for the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps' Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System/Tier 2 program. Flight tests throughout 2008 will ensure a high-technology readiness level of the entire KillerBee system.
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Note to Editors:
Ongoing flight tests have demonstrated the integrated architecture that includes the hosting of the vehicle specific module in the aircraft mission computer, further validating the STANAG 4586 architecture, and the KJ-640 electro optical-infrared sensor system.
STANAG 4586 is a NATO Standardization Agreement developed in conjunction with the Conference of National Armaments Directors and other authorities; the resulting architecture is an international standard specifically for unmanned aircraft systems.