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US Army Orders 600 Coyote Drone Interceptors Amid Middle East Attacks

RTX has received a US Army contract for the production of 600 Coyote 2C drone interceptors.

The $75-million rapid acquisition authority contract follows a series of attacks by the Iran-backed Houthis against US naval vessels in the Red Sea.

US forces were also targeted in Jordan last month, losing three soldiers in a drone attack.

“The contract supports a Coyote Interceptor demand increase and subsequent need to increase production capacity,” the army said.

“The contract award was part of an Office of the Secretary of Defense rapid acquisition authority that was identified to Congress, with all actions completed in less than 30 days from the authorization approval and receipt of funding.”

US soldiers in Jordan
(Representative image only.) US soldiers in Jordan. Photo: KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP

7,000 Coyotes Requested

It follows a request for information for the acquisition of around 7,000 Coyotes.

The December solicitation is for 6,000 kinetic Coyotes, 700 non-kinetic Coyotes, 252 fixed launchers, 52 mobile launchers, 118 fixed Ku-band radars, and 33 mobile radars.

The army intends to award a contract to Raytheon, which originally developed the system. However, other interested firms “who believe they are capable” of providing all the requirements can also be considered.

Coyote unmanned aircraft system
Coyote unmanned aircraft system. Image: Raytheon Missiles and Defense

Reusable Drone Killer

The rocket motor and turbine engine-powered Coyote is a radar-guided air-breathing missile with kinetic and non-kinetic variants.

The Coyote 2C is kinetic, while the Coyote 3 is non-kinetic.

The reusable interceptor can be integrated with both fixed and moving integrated counter-drone systems based on ground vehicles, helicopters, and surface vessels.

Its Ku-band radio frequency system can be set up in 30 minutes to track and detect drones, rockets, artillery, and mortars.

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