BAE Systems in new unmanned air vehicle development

Lancashire aerospace workers are looking to develop an all-electric heavy lift drone to support the armed forces.

Thursday, 16th September 2021, 4:55 am

BAE Systems has teamed up with Malloy Aeronautics on the uncrewed air system (UAS) project which aims to be a cost-effective, sustainable rapid response aircraft for military and civilian customers.

The electric powered concept vehicle will be designed with a top speed of 140 kilometres per hour and the ability to carry a 300kg payload with a range of 30 kilometres.

The technology could be used for a range of applications such as performing ship-to-ship and ship-to-shore movements to support military and security operations and logistics.

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An artist's impression of the drone under development

The zero carbon, drone could help military operations where there is a requirement to carry heavy loads, helping to keep military personnel out of harm’s way in dangerous situations or disaster zones, while reducing the environmental impact of armed forces.

The companies are exploring opportunities to collaborate on capability, design, manufacture and marketing.

Dave Holmes, Advanced Projects, Technology and Manufacturing Director for BAE Systems’ Lancashire-based Air Sector, said: “It’s fantastic to be working with Malloy Aeronautics on this ground-breaking technology.

"Bringing together Malloy’s proven track record of innovative technology in this field, with our understanding of the military operating environment and extensive engineering and systems integration experience, will enable us to develop a sustainable and cost-effective solution for both military and commercial customers.”

The drone is designed to be able to carry a payload of up to 300kg

Oriol Badia, CEO Malloy Aeronautics, said: “Beyond the military capabilities, there is also clear potential in the commercial, security and humanitarian arenas. Our goal is to work together with BAE Systems to ensure that our capabilities are not just the first and best for defence, but that they become the future workhorse to keep all our personnel safe.”

The concept vehicle directly supports BAE Systems’ strategy to accelerate technology development through increased investment in research and development, as well as working with industry partners, SMEs and academia.

It added that the drive to develop sustainable products and solutions to meet evolving customer requirements was a key focus.

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