Visitors to the BAE Systems pavilion here at Farnborough are being greeted by a model of a UCAV (unmanned combat air vehicle) representing a notional shape that could one day be a joint Anglo-French design. The UCAV model reflects the UK group’s refocusing of its show presence on “air” products, and the hugely important part unmanned systems are expected to play in the company’s future.
Comparison of UAVs
An Anglo-French defense summit in Paris last week confirmed that the two governments will sign a risk-reduction contract soon with BAE Systems and Dassault Aviation for the Telemos Medium Altitude Long-Endurance (Male) UAV. “We look forward to taking further decisions jointly in the light of the outcomes of this risk-reduction phase to ensure that our respective sovereign requirements will be met in a cost-effective manner,” the governments added.
EADS Defense and Security Division confirmed that three European governments have provided funds for a risk-reduction study of the company’s concept for a modular, jet-powered reconnaissance UAV. EADS Germany previously designed, built and flew a UCAV demonstrator called the Barracuda mainly using its own funds, but this unmanned airplane crashed last year during an early test flight.