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General Atomics Demos New Self Protection System for MQ-9 Drone

MQ-9 RPA General Atomics
MQ-9 RPA, General Atomics

A General Atomics-made drone self-protection system demonstrated tracking and situational awareness functions as part of a project with U.S. Special Operations Command.

The company said Friday its MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft used the new Self-Protection Pod to track infrared missile and radio frequency threats during a demonstration on Oct. 28 at Yuma Proving Grounds.

MQ-9 also deployed countermeasures and delivered situational awareness against simulated threats.

SPP uses modern aircraft survivability equipment including technologies made by Raytheon Technologies, BAE Systems and Leonardo DRS.

Raytheon's AN/ALR-69A(V) receives radar warnings and BAE's ALE-47 Countermeasures Dispenser System allows for the airborne deployment of flares and decoys. Leonardo's BriteCloud Expendable Active Decoy serves as a countermeasure for radio frequency threats.

Terma North America also provided its AN/ALQ-213 Electronic Warfare Management System that facilitates the command, control and monitoring of SPP's systems.

“Threat awareness and survivability are critical capabilities needed to enable the MQ-9 to operate in a contested environment,“ said David Alexander, president of the aeronautical systems business of General Atomics.

The U.S. Navy and Air National Guard supported the exercise under General Atomics' cooperative research and development agreement with USSOCOM.

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