UK Royal Navy Is Latest Customer for Scan Eagle UAS

 - July 5, 2013, 12:10 PM
AIN Defense Perspective editor Chris Pocock gets up close and personal with a Scan Eagle UAS at Insitu’s test site in Oregon. The UAV’s catapult launch and recovery sling rig is visible in the background. (Photo: Boeing)

Boeing’s Insitu subsidiary won a UK competition to provide unmanned maritime surveillance system on Royal Navy frigates and support ships. Insitu will provide the ScanEagle UAS under an initial two-year $45 million contractor-owned, contractor-operated (coco) contract. EADS Cassidian, Lockheed Martin and QinetiQ were also invited to bid for the deal. Insitu has executed similar “coco” contracts for other ScanEagle customers.

Philip Dunne, UK Minister for Defence, Equipment, Support and Technology, said, “ScanEagle provides the Royal Navy with proven surveillance capability that has already been used on operations by other nations, so we know we are getting top-quality equipment. The technology is off-the-shelf and will be available to the Royal Navy as soon as possible.” A Royal Navy officer added that the UAV’s day/night capability will give commanders a clearer picture of the operational situation whenever it’s required.

The MoD’s tender called for two “task lines” each providing up to 300 hours ISR coverage per month. The required endurance was eight hours, when operating up to 32 nm from the ship.