Leidos Australia has announced that it has added Aeronautics Ltd to its bid Project LAND 129 Phase 3 for a new Tactical Unmanned Aerial System (TUAS) to replace of the Australian Army’s Shadow 200s.

The company said in its announcement that the strategic partnership will bring together Leidos’ Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) integration, and Aeronautics’ experience as a supplier of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), to deliver a next generation, tactical solution for the Australian Army.

“Leidos conducted an exhaustive search to identify capable platforms in class that can provide optimum capabilities to the Australian Army,” said Acting Leidos Australia Chief Executive, Paul Chase. “We are excited to have Aeronautics join our team. We look forward to combining the capabilities of both companies to create a highly-qualified team with a strong technology footprint in Australia.”

Moshe Elazar, the Chief Executive Officer of Aeronautics Group which a subsidiary of Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems said that Aeronautics is “excited to team with Leidos and offer our advanced capabilities to the Australian Army,” adding that “We are also determined to have an exceptionally positive impact on the Australian industry by further developing local skills and capabilities whilst giving access to our global supply chain.”

It is unclear what platform Leidos will be offering for its bid, although Aeronautics manufactures the Orbiter family of UAS, with the Orbiter 3 or 4 being classed by the company as TUAS.

Leidos Australia was recently named as one of four companies shortlisted to compete for the conceptual system integration design phase of the LAND 129 Phase 3 alongside Insitu Pacific Ltd, Raytheon Austraalia Pty Ltd and Textron Systems Australia Pty Ltd.

Leidos Australia has recently called for Expressions of Interest (EOI) from Australian suppliers and Small to Medium Enterprises (SME) to join their team. Capabilities being sought include composite manufacturing, payloads for Tier 2 UAVs, mechanical assembly, training services, warehousing support, logistics support, UAV operations and maintenance support.

The EOI closes on the 14th of May 2020.

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