Martin UAV, Textron competing for Army's Future Tactical UAS

By Ashley Tressel / March 29, 2019 at 1:26 PM

HUNTSVILLE, AL -- The Army has chosen Martin UAV and Textron Systems to produce non-developmental unmanned aircraft systems for a program to replace the RQ-7 Shadow, headed by the Future Vertical Lift cross-functional team.

Martin, teamed with Northrop Grumman Technology Services, and Textron will compete for each order of a $99.5 million procurement contract through March 27, 2022, the Defense Department announced last night.

Textron confirmed in a press release this morning the award was for the Future Tactical UAS program.

FTUAS is part of a three-system family of next-generation UASs, including Air Launched Effects, a tube-launched UAS, and Advanced UAS intended for combat aviation brigades.

"I think [FTUAS is] going to be more than a gap-filler, and we can go quicker, not spend our precious developmental dollars," FVL CFT director Brig. Gen. Wally Rugen told reporters at the Association of the United States Army's Global Force Summit here this week. "The development in that sector . . . and the civilian [uses] are so prolific that we think we can quickly make something into what we can very much use."

The Army solicited proposals last fall for the FTUAS and conducted a fly-off at Dugway Proving Ground in Utah, according to Rugen.

Martin and Textron beat out 11 other vendors to deliver systems to Army Forces Command brigade combat teams to test reconnaissance, surveillance and targeting capability.