Cobham Teams With GA-ASI to Provide UAV Whole Life Support to UK MoD

Jul 15, 2008

Cobham plc (Cobham) and General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) are pleased to announce the creation of a Teaming Agreement to cover whole life support arrangements for UK Government GA-ASI products.  This teaming arrangement will initially focus on the provision of support to the UK MoD MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aircraft system (UAS) currently in operation with the Royal Air Force (RAF) over Afghanistan.  The Team will develop support solutions that could be used by the UK MoD to offer increased flexibility and sovereignty over existing arrangements.

Andy Stevens, Chief Operating Officer Cobham said:
“This Teaming Agreement enables us to apply all of the capabilities of our Aviation Services Division to deliver what could be a very important contribution to the UK MoD’s operational UAV capability.  This also emphasises the importance of the UK Defence Industrial Strategy and the part that we can play in service provision to the MoD in partnership with GA-ASI.  We look forward to working with our US partner to deliver such support services as the UK MoD may require.”

Thomas J. Cassidy, Jr., President, Aircraft Systems Group, GA-ASI commented:
“The multi-mission Predator B has demonstrated superior reliability, affordability and surveillance capabilities, and UK forces are now witnessing the aircraft’s proven reconnaissance and strike capabilities first-hand. By teaming with Cobham, a UK industry leader, we have taken the next step to ensure that UK Reaper operations can continue to be backed by timely, flexible, integrated logistics support.” 

Assistant Chief of the Air Staff, Air Vice-Marshal Tim Anderson made the following statement:
“RAF Reapers are continuing to prove and expand their versatility and effectiveness across their current theatre of operations and roles, making a real difference and saving lives.  We welcome the teaming arrangement between GA-ASI and Cobham as it will build on a well-established relationship to offer the prospect of increasingly responsive and effective support to these key systems.”

Jonathan Barratt, the Strategic Unmanned Air Vehicle Experiment (SUAVE) Integrated Project Team Leader (IPTL) also stated that: “The teaming arrangement provides us with the potential for UK to increase flexibility and robustness of support and the ability to develop UK industry’s UAS support capabilities in line with MOD Defence Industrial Strategy.  We look forward to the team’s proposals.” 

(SUAVE lead the acquisition and support of UK Reaper)

Cobham plc
Julian Hellebrand, Group Director of Communications +44   (0)1202 857651

Cobham’s products and services have been at the heart of sophisticated military and civil systems for more than 70 years, keeping people safe, improving communications and enhancing the capability of land, sea, air and space platforms. The Company has four divisions employing more than 10,000 people on five continents, with customers and partners in over 100 countries, and annual revenues of more than £1bn.

Cobham Aviation Services operates more than 150 fixed and rotary wing aircraft globally. It operates the largest civil maritime surveillance contract in the world, covering more than 37,000 km of coastline and trains all UK helicopter pilots for the Navy, Air Force and Army. The Division provides modern battlespace air warfare training and essential flight inspection services for civil and military airports in the UK, Europe and beyond. It also specialises in the conversion and support of a wide range of civil and military platforms including the Nimrod MR2, R1 and Sentry E3-D fleets. The Division has responsibility for overseeing Cobham’s involvement in the Future Strategic Tanker Aircraft (FSTA) programme.

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of proven, reliable unmanned aircraft systems and tactical reconnaissance radars, including the Predator® UAS series and Lynx® SAR/ GMTI sensor system.  The company also provides pilot training and support services for UAS field operations and integrates sensor and communications equipment into manned ISR aircraft.  GA-ASI has expanded the acceptance and application of UAS within the United States and among allied forces around the globe, with the UK MoD serving as its first international customer for the multi-purpose Predator B/MQ-9 Reaper aircraft.

For more information contact:

Kimberly Kasitz
Public Relations Manager
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.

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