07 November, 2015 by James Drew - FG
Dubai - Textron is determined to arm its “Version 2” and next-generation “Mark 2” Shadow tactical unmanned aircraft with its lightweight Fury weapons even without serious interest from the US Army, which is more keen to diversify the weaponry available on its General Atomics Aeronautical Systems MQ-1C Gray Eagles.
The all-digital RQ-7B V2 Shadow entered service with the army in late 2014, and Textron expects to deliver 20-25 systems annually, each consisting of four aircraft and two ground stations, over the next five years as the service replaces legacy platforms. Meanwhile, Textron continues to market the new Shadow “M2” air vehicle domestically and abroad, touting its more powerful engine, payload capacity, endurance and potential satellite communications capability for beyond-line-of-sight reconnaissance missions. The M2 and Textron’s Aerosonde small UAV are both on display at this year’s Dubai air ahow, along with the Fury miniature munition that Textron hopes will arm modern RQ-7 variants as well as other manned and unmanned platforms.