AeroVironment receives contract award for Puma 3 AE UAS for U.S. Navy and Marine Corps SUAS program

AeroVironment Inc. has announced that on Feb. 18, it received a $10,677,987 firm-fixed-price contract award for its Puma 3 AE systems and spares for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft Systems (SUAS) Program.

Delivery of the technology is anticipated by this month.

“Puma 3 AE is a combat-proven enabler of U.S. Navy and Marine Corps tactical operations, providing persistent situational awareness, expeditionary reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition, force protection and overwatch – anywhere and at any time,” explains Rick Pedigo, AeroVironment vice president of business development.

“Its versatility, ruggedness and reliability in a wide range of operating environments – over land and sea – consistently provide the actionable intelligence warfighters need to proceed with certainty.”

A fully man-portable UAS, the hand-launched Puma 3 AE is designed for land and maritime operations, and can land in water or on land. With a wingspan of 9.2 feet and weighing 15 pounds, the UAS can operate for up to 2.5 hours at a range of up to 12.4 miles with a standard antenna. When equipped with AeroVironment’s Long-Range Tracking Antenna (LRTA), it can operate for up 37.2 miles.

Additionally, the drone’s Mantis i45 EO/IR sensor suite provides the operator with extended flight time and a level of imaging capability “never before available in the small UAS class,” according to AeroVironment.