Leonardo Helicopter has won an £8 million deal contract from UK ministry of defense to help research and develop unmanned helicopter drones.
The Ministry of Defence announced Sunday that it will work with Leonardo Helicopters to see how the technology could be used to support military personnel on the battlefield.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon described the work as "innovative". He said it would help the military maintain its advantage in the future.
The jointly funded programme aims to identify, develop and exploit the opportunities offered by emerging technologies, to reduce costs and increase the agility, flexibility, resilience and persistence of UK rotary wing capability. The intention is also to use the expertise of workers in Yeovil to explore new technologies based on unmanned rotary wing devices.
More than 50 of the Army's "eye in the sky" Watchkeeper drones are currently based at Boscombe Down in South Wiltshire.
The announcement comes follows the Royal Navy led ‘Unmanned Warrior’ in 2016: a major international demonstration of autonomous systems.