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U-TacS awards datalink contract to Cubic

Leicester, 15 December 2005

UAV Tactical Systems Ltd (U-TacS), the Elbit Systems/Thales UK joint venture company for Unmanned Air Vehicle (UAV) subsystems, has awarded Cubic Defense Applications a £29M (approx.) contract to supply its advanced data link technology for the MoD’s WATCHKEEPER programme. Cubic has subcontracted its UK partner, Ultra Electronics, to assist in development and supplying the data links for this critical UK defence program.

WATCHKEEPER will provide the UK Armed Forces with 24/7 surveillance capabilities in all types of weather conditions without the need to deploy troops into sensitive or harmful environments. The unmanned air vehicles that will be used, the WK450, can stay airborne for up to 16 hours each. Cubic’s high-speed data link will provide the wireless connection for transferring data and images from WK450 air vehicles to ground control stations.

Cubic’s spectrally efficient Tactical Common Data Link (TCDL) and High Integrity Data Link (HIDL) will be employed for this program. The TCDL will enable WATCHKEEPER to transfer time-critical information from multiple UAVs operating in the same geographical area without mutual interference. The HIDL, developed for command-and-control of UAVs, will provide WATCHKEEPER with a versatile, programmable back-up link.

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