THE FUTURE of the troubled GEC-Marconi Phoenix unmanned-air-vehicle programme will be determined at ministerial level. Submission of a critical report into the six-year-late project is expected in the next few months.

The Phoenix reconnaissance and targeting system is under review, with several options being considered, including procuring an alternative system. The programme review was exclusively revealed by Flight International (25-31 January).

Programme costs have doubled, to £227 million, while the Phoenix, originally due to enter service in 1989, has yet to be fielded by the Army.

Source: Flight International