British defense technology firm QinetiQ has been contracted to provide Banshee Jet 80+ unmanned aerial targets to the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force.
As part of the agreement, the company will deliver an undisclosed number of Banshee targets and provide logistics support, spare parts, and other necessary services to operate the platforms.
The deal will also see the Farnborough-based firm set the program for Japan’s aerial target anti-aircraft firing training.
According to QinetiQ, this is the first time it has sold aerial targets to the Asian nation. The company states that the contract is the “result of more than 20 years of successfully delivering maritime uncrewed target services.”
The firm has not disclosed the precise date of delivery, but the aerial targets will begin being used in the summer of 2023.
The Banshee Aerial Target
The Banshee Jet 80+ features a twin-jet engine and flies at a maximum speed of 648 kilometers (402 miles) per hour.
It has an operating range of 100 kilometers (62 miles) and an endurance of 45 minutes.
The Banshee represents threats posed by enemy drones, aircraft, and other aerial weapons and is used to test air-to-air missiles, surface-to-air missiles, and cannon systems.
The drone is also equipped with eight smoke tracking flares, 16 infrared tracking flares, a black-body infrared source, an identification friend or foe transponder, and a radar altimeter.