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US Navy, Sagetech Avionics to Enhance Capabilities of Future Small Drones

The US Navy has signed an agreement with Sagetech Avionics to jointly explore advanced capabilities for small unmanned aerial systems.

The partnership aims to equip the service’s future small drones with identification friend-or-foe, combat identification, and collision avoidance technology.

The Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) is currently developing the drones covered by the initiative.

The UAS fleet will support various US Navy objectives and expand the service’s tactical advantage.

US Navy logistics drone
A TRV-150 Tactical Resupply UAS flies over Webster Field Outlying Field in Maryland Oct. 27 as part of a demonstration. Image: US Navy

“If this CRADA [Cooperative Research and Development Agreement] achieves its goals, any UAS which NSWC PCD develops will have a leg up on the competition by allowing us to present a value-added solution to the warfighter,” NSWC PCD Expeditionary Systems Engineer Gavin Taylor explained.

“The technology Sagetech is working on is a critical component of the fight—Today and Tomorrow. Having the knowledge and expertise to integrate this into our future UAS systems will give NSWC PCD a greater capacity to serve the warfighter.”

Acquiring ‘Cutting-Edge’ Technologies

NSWC will continue to partner with other collaborative teams in developing capabilities under the Shaping Future Littoral Battlespace Operations, seeking innovations to bolster naval systems.

“Any projects stemming from this CRADA will have the benefit of cutting-edge technology not commercially available, allowing the government to maintain intellectual capital rather than having to go outside the fence for specialized support,” Taylor explained.

“Growing this knowledge at NSWC PCD will further establish our position as a Navy lab as we continue to push the boundaries of technology in support of the warfighter.”

Sagetech in Airspace Projects

The agreement is Safetech’s first CRADA with the NSWC. Alongside the US Navy, the company is working on projects across US defense, NATO partners, and allies to sustain safer airspace missions.

“Sagetech has a history of working with all branches of the military to ensure that manned and unmanned aircraft can fly safely and integrate effectively into both commercial airspace and the joint military battlespace,” Sagetech Avionics CEO Tom Furey said.

“As a small business, PCD has made it easy to collaborate and advance both dual-use and military specific technology for the benefit of the warfighter.”

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