AeroVironment has received a contract modification, raising the value of its contract with the US Army to sell Puma 3 AE RQ-20B drones by $11.24 million.
While the Department of Defense has not disclosed the number of drones to be purchased, Shephard Defence Insight estimates that one RQ-20B system costs $230,000, making the US Army contract with AeroVironment for 48 systems.
The deal is a continuation of a January 27 contract from the army’s Contracting Command for $8.5 million.
The work will take place in Simi Valley, California, with an estimated completion date of July 31, 2023.
The Puma AE RQ-20B
The Puma AE RQ-20B is a waterproof drone that can operate in all environments and land on both land and water.
The unmanned aerial system is equipped with a secondary GPS for precise coordinate mapping and can be controlled manually or deployed autonomously.
It uses a 360-degree gimbal camera with an infrared illuminator and electro-optical sensors. The unit can operate for three hours or more, with a flight speed of 41 knots (76 kilometers/47 miles per hour) and a maximum altitude of 500 feet (152 meters).