BLUFAustralia has selected the MQ-9B Sky Guardian as its preferred version of the Predator B for Project AIR 7003.
The Australian Air Force is a step closer to introducing an armed, remotely piloted aircraft system (RPAS), medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) capability. The MQ-9B SkyGuardian is part of the $1.3 billion AIR 7003 project.The SkyGuardian will consist of a highly modular airframe capable of carrying a variety of payloads to meet mission-specific requirements. It will also be certified to operate within civilian airspace. The unmanned aircraft will provide an integrated and persistent ISR and attack capability to support ADF and coalition forces. Consider the advantages to having local in-service sustainability and employing Australian-specific sensor capabilities during the development process. What effect would that create, especially when SkyGuardian is teamed with Air Force's other, higher altitude, ISR capabilities?