Boeing subsidiary Insitu has received a $71.6 million contract to manufacture a fifth batch of RQ-21A Blackjack unmanned aircraft systems for the U.S. Navy.
The Defense Department said Tuesday that Insitu will produce six Blackjack air vehicles, ground control stations, launch-and-recovery systems and shipboard equipment kits under the low-rate initial production contract.
Insitu will conduct the production work in Bingen, Washington, and in Hood River, Oregon, through October 2017.
The Navy obligated the full contract amount at the time of award from its fiscal year 2016 overseas contingency operations aircraft procurement funds and the U.S. Marine Corps’ fiscal 2016 aircraft procurement funds.
Both service branches started to procure the RQ-21A Blackjack in 2010 as part of an effort to meet the services' small tactical unmanned aircraft system requirement.
The RQ-21A is designed to perform maritime and land-based tactical reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition to collect and disseminate data to warfighters.