U.S. Army Procures IGNAT UAV System


May 27, 2003

27 May 2003 - San Diego, California. General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc., the leading manufacturer of remotely piloted aircraft surveillance systems, announced today that it has received a contract from the U.S. Army valued at $7.99 million. The contract calls for the delivery of three IGNAT aircraft plus a modular ground control station, portable ground data terminals and associated spare equipment. Delivery of the first aircraft to the US Army Aviation and Missile Command at Redstone Arsenal in Alabama is scheduled for May 2004. This procurement will enhance the Army's capability to accelerate the development of its UAV Concept of Operations in the transformation of its Objective Force Unit of Employment/Unit of Action force structure.

As the predecessor of the U.S. Air Force and Navy Predator aircraft, the GNAT series have been operational for over ten years providing intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance information to the U.S. and two foreign customers. The Improved GNAT (IGNAT) has also been on numerous combat area deployments operating from military and civilian airports on five separate continents. Sharing common avionics and mechanical systems with its sister aircraft, the IGNAT can carry over 200 lbs of payload and remain airborne for 50 hours. Coupled with its ability to fly up to an altitude of 25,000 ft, this system provides the U.S. Army with an unmanned aircraft system which provides the commander with state-of-the-art electro-optical/infrared capabilities.

The U.S. Army, along with the Navy and Air Force, have currently procured the General Atomics Aeronautical Systems' IGNAT, Predator and Predator B aircraft, bringing the total procured by the U.S. government to well over a hundred aircraft. The company remains dedicated to providing long endurance, mission capable aircraft systems such as the Predator, Predator B, IGNAT, ALTAIR and ALTUS aircraft for a variety of mission applications including surveillance, reconnaissance, targeting, weapons delivery, scientific research, atmospheric monitoring and other commercial applications. Thomas J. Cassidy, Jr. is President and Chief Executive Officer.


For more information contact:

Public Relations Department
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.


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