FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov 19, 2010
Predator B UAS Program Named Tops in System Level Production & Sustainment
SAN DIEGO – 19 November 2010 – General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA‑ASI), a leading manufacturer of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), tactical reconnaissance radars, and surveillance systems, today announced that Aviation Week has named the company as a leader in its field, honoring it with a 2010 Program Excellence Award in the category of System Level Production & Sustainment. The 2010 Program Excellence Awards were announced at Aviation Week’s annual Aerospace & Defense (A&D) Programs Conference held in Phoenix, Ariz., on November 2.
“Today, our industry is faced with managing significantly diverse teams, both geographically and culturally,” said Anthony L. Velocci, Jr., editor-in-chief, Aviation Week & Space Technology. “Program performance, coupled with exceptional leadership innovation, separates these programs from the rest. We are pleased to present these awards to honor their accomplishments.”
GA-ASI’s Predator® B/MQ-9 Reaper UAS Program was selected from an initial field of 67 nominated programs and was one of three final winners chosen. The company was recognized for the disciplined approach it has used in executing the Predator B Program – from defining requirements with the end-user in mind, to the tools and processes that have been selected to support the effort. In particular, the judges applauded GA-ASI’s ability to determine which tools and processes would not add value to the execution of the program. This rigor and discipline have proven invaluable in assuring high availability of the system and its use in a broad spectrum of applications for national defense and security.
“On behalf of our more than 4,500 employees whose daily efforts have revolutionized the use and sophistication of unmanned aircraft systems, I take great satisfaction in receiving this award, and even greater pride in knowing that our Predator-series aircraft are making a positive and significant difference in helping safeguard our nation and protecting U.S. and coalition forces in multiple combat areas,” said Dave Alexander, vice president of engineering, Aircraft Systems Group, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.
Based on the success of the company’s flagship MQ-1 Predator UAS, GA-ASI began developing the larger, faster, more capable Predator B/MQ-9 Reaper aircraft in 2001 and first flew it in 2001. Today, Predator B is the world’s foremost persistent surveillance and precision-strike UAS. No other unmanned aircraft can claim the combination of long-endurance, range, and high-altitude Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities and precision-strike firepower. More than 80 aircraft have been delivered to date to the U.S. Air Force and other customers, 25 Predator Bs are currently on order for multiple customers, and the aircraft have accumulated more than 180,000 flight hours. The program has been so successful that six variants have been delivered to seven different customers, including a maritime version. In addition, more and more U.S. allies are requesting the acquisition of MQ-9 for military and civil service. Lastly, Predator B’s value is expressed in continued investment by its customers to give the aircraft the mission capabilities it has today, as well as direct feedback from system users of how it has helped them succeed with their missions.
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc., an affiliate of General Atomics, delivers situational awareness by providing unmanned aircraft, radar, and electro-optic solutions for military and commercial applications worldwide. The company’s Aircraft Systems Group is a leading designer and manufacturer of proven, reliable unmanned aircraft systems, including Predator A, Predator B, Sky Warrior®, and the new Predator C Avenger®. It also manufactures a variety of solid-state digital Ground Control Stations (GCSs), including the next-generation Advanced Cockpit GCS, and provides pilot training and support services for UAS field operations. The Reconnaissance Systems Group designs, manufactures, and integrates the Lynx® SAR/GMTI radar and sophisticated Claw® sensor control and image analysis software into both manned and unmanned aircraft. It also integrates other sensor and communication equipment into manned ISR aircraft and develops emerging technologies in solid-state lasers, electro-optic sensors, and ultra-wideband data links for government applications. For more information, please visit www.ga-asi.com.
Predator, Sky Warrior, Avenger, Lynx, and Claw are registered trademarks of General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.
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Public Relations Manager
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.