Airbus DS Progresses on European MALE RPAS Contract

2016-06-24

Airbus DS Progresses on European MALE RPAS Contract
Airbus Defence and Space (DS) is to sign a definition study contract for the European medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) remotely-piloted air system (RPAS) by mid-July, ahead of the commencement of development work on the project in September.

The contract with the Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (Organisation conjointe de coopération en matière d’armement: OCCAR) will be signed by Airbus DS, along with its project partners Alenia Aermacchi and Dassault, with development set to run through to the end of 2018.

Speaking at the companys Ottobrunn facility near Munich, Jana Rosenmann, head of Unmanned Aerial Systems, said the definition phase of the programme that will follow the contract signature would focus on common operational capabilities, top-level technical requirements, overall system, design, as well as the future MALE RPAS development and production effort.

Also referred to as MALE2020, the European MALE RPAS project was launched in May 2014 with the goal of providing an unmanned capability to the armed forces of France, Germany, and Italy.

Airbus DS officials have previously told IHS Janes that this first definition phase is important to ensure that the designers “dont go down a blind alley” in the development of the platforms capabilities.

A decision on further development of the European MALE RPAS/MALE2020 will be taken by the participating governments following the completion of the definition study.

The European MALE RPAS/MALE2020 is one of a number of unmanned aircraft projects that are currently being pursued by Airbus DS, with others including the Zephyr pseudo-satellite and Future Combat Air System, which is being billed as a future replacement for Germanys Panavia Tornado manned combat aircraft.

Region:  Europe
Contry:  France
Category:  UAV


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