Sagem has received a follow-on order to supply the French army with five Sperwer Mk II tactical unmanned air vehicles, with deliveries to conclude by mid-2013.
Placed by France's DGA defence procurement agency under an option included in a three-aircraft order signed in February 2011, the deal "will enable the French army to maintain its [SDTI] tactical drone capability", Sagem says. The service has operated the Sperwer system in Afghanistan since 2003, it adds.
With a maximum take-off weight of 330kg (727lb), the tactical UAV offers a mission endurance of around 6h, flying up to 200km (108nm) away from its ground control station.
In addition to supplying the new batch of UAVs, Sagem has also been contracted to modernise the GPS navigation equipment installed on all operational Sperwer aircraft for France. This will enable the unmanned system to perform the precise geo-location of ground targets in combination with its Euroflir 350+ electro-optical/infrared sensor pod.