General Atomics Aeronautical Systems announced Feb. 17 its notification of Spain’s selection of the Predator ® B/MQ-9 Reaper ® RPA system to support the nation’s airborne surveillance and reconnaissance requirements.
GA-ASI is a leading manufacturer of remotely piloted aircraft systems, radars, and electro-optic and related mission systems solutions.
The Spanish Ministry of Defense has awarded GA-ASI the delivery of one Predator B RPA system for the Spanish armed forces to include four aircraft equipped with MTS-B Elctro-optical/Infrared (EO/IR) sensors and GA-ASI’s Block 20A Lynx ® Multi-mode Radar, two Block 30 Ground Control Stations, and Satellite Communications and Line-of-Sight data link capabilities by means of a U.S.-Spanish Foreign Military Sales agreement.
“GA-ASI is proud to partner with the Spanish armed forces to offer our operationally proven Predator B RPA to fulfill Spain’s emerging multi-mission requirements,” said Linden Blue, GA-ASIs CEO. “We also look forward to working with teammate SENER, a leading engineering company, and developing collaborative partnerships with other Spanish companies to help ensure the long-term success of the program.”
For his part, Andrés Sendagorta, vice president of SENER, said “SENER, as technological teammate of GA-ASI for the MALE [Medium-Altitude Long-Endurance] project in Spain, is delighte3d to make all its capabilities available to the Spanish armed forces in order to achieve the best integration of the new system in Spain.
“The MQ-9 is broadly considered to be the best system in its range to which SENER has been providing keen backing for years. Reaper will contribute significantly to strengthen our country’s defense and security system, and will provide increased protection to our forces.”
GA-ASIs multi-mission Predator B is a long-endurance, medium-high-altitude RPA that features and extensive payload capacity (850 pounds/386 kilos internally, 3,750 pounds/1,700 kilos externally) with a maximum altitude of 50,000 feet, and can stay aloft for up to 27 hours. Complementing this capability, SENER and Spanish industry will leverage their proven engineering and manufacturing experience to optimize sustainment and capability of the Predator B system in support of the Spanish armed forces.
Predator B is currently operational with the U.S. Air Force, Royal Air Force, French Air Force and the Italian Air Force. The aircraft provides unmatched persistent situational awareness, safeguarding borders and maritime approaches, supporting military missions worldwide, and saving lives following natural disasters. Some 245 Predator B aircraft have amassed more than one million flight hours since first flight in 2001.