HUNT VALLEY, Md., Dec. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- United Industrial Corporation (NYSE: UIC), an affiliate of Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT), announced today that its AAI Corporation subsidiary has received an order from the U.S. Army for production of 14 additional Shadow 200 Tactical Unmanned Aircraft Systems (TUAS).
The value of the not-to-exceed contract is
"AAI designed the Shadow system with soldiers in mind, and clearly it connected with them. Today, the soldiers and equipment are one - they fly them, maintain them, and accomplish things even we hadn't thought possible," said Steven Reid , vice president of AAI's Unmanned Aircraft Systems. "We are tremendously proud that the Shadow system has become such a trusted reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition resource for the U.S. Army."
Worldwide, Shadow systems have flown more than 61,000 missions in excess of 259,000 flight hours - more than 90 percent in support of U.S. and allied operations in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.
In addition to the production and upgrade of Shadow systems, AAI provides performance-based logistics support and sustainment operations for fielded and deployed U.S. Army TUAS units.
Since December 1999 , when the U.S. Army selected AAI to be its TUAS prime contractor, the company has been awarded a series of annual production contracts now totaling 88 Shadow systems. Each system includes four unmanned aircraft, two One System(R) ground control stations and ground data terminals, four One System remote video terminals, a One System portable ground control station, and associated components and support equipment.
Sixty-one systems have been delivered to the customer, and system deliveries from backlog now extend through March 2010 . Work will be performed at AAI's manufacturing facilities in Hunt Valley, Md.
In addition to the Shadow 200, AAI manufactures a number of other unmanned aircraft systems and is recognized for its design and development of advanced ground control stations and interoperable network technologies. The company has delivered a variety of aircraft systems to allied armed forces.
"It isn't enough to have the aircraft in the sky - AAI also provides U.S. and allied warfighters meaningful, integrated, situational awareness data quickly and accurately," explains Reid. "Our team is focused not only on delivering cutting-edge unmanned aircraft, but also providing state-of-the-art ground control station, data collection and dissemination technologies."
Furthermore, AAI manufactures Aerosonde(R) unmanned aircraft systems for an array of military and civil aviation uses. Customers include the Australian Defence Science and Technology Organisation, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in the United States , and the Meteorological Institutes of Japan and Korea.
AAI's One System(R) ground control station is compatible and interoperable with multiple unmanned aircraft systems, including Shadow, Pioneer(R), Hunter, Sky Warrior(R), Fire Scout, Eagle Eye, and Aerosonde. Commonality reduces future training and operating costs for U.S. and allied armed forces.
United Industrial Corporation designs, produces, and supports aerospace and defense systems through its wholly owned subsidiary, AAI Corporation, and AAI Corporation's direct and indirect wholly owned subsidiaries, AAI Services Corporation, Aerosonde Pty Ltd, Aerosonde North America Incorporated, ESL Defence Limited, McTurbine Inc., and Symtx, Inc. Its high-technology products and services include unmanned aircraft systems, training and simulation systems, automated aerospace test and maintenance equipment, armament systems, aviation ground support equipment, logistical and engineering services, and maintenance, repair and overhaul activities. On October 8, 2007 , UIC entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Textron Inc. Upon completion of this acquisition, AAI Corporation will become a business operation of Textron Systems.