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03:58 AM, April 18, 2018
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Gremlins UAS concept (Image: DARPA)

Dynetics has been awarded $32 million contract for Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA) Phase III of the Gremlins program.

This contract provides for the research, development, and demonstration of safe and reliable aerial launch and recovery of multiple unmanned air vehicles, with traceability to an objective system capable of employing and recovering diverse distributed payloads in volley quantities.

Work is expected to be completed by January 2020.

The Gremlins program plans to explore numerous technical areas, including: Launch and recovery techniques, equipment and aircraft integration concepts, Low-cost, limited-life airframe designs and High-fidelity analysis, precision digital flight control, relative navigation and station keeping, according to DARPA.

Dynetics is developing low-cost, reusable unmanned air systems (UASs) for the DARPA Gremlins program. Gremlins will be launched from existing military aircraft while out of range of adversary defenses. The Gremlins architecture enables other critical technologies such as advanced payloads, autonomous operations, and distributed battle management of swarming systems.

When Gremlins complete their mission, a C-130 transport aircraft retrieves them in the air and transports them to a base of operations where ground crews refurbish and prepare them for their next use within 24 hours.

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