Procurement: December 1, 2001

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Boeing has created a new division, Unmanned Systems, to design unmanned aerial drones and the ground systems to support them. While the division's best known product is the X-45 unmanned combat air vehicle, it will also move into new fields including intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance. The division will use stealthy technologies and sensors from the X-32 JSF and the DarkStar programs to field new aircraft types. New projects will include cheap expendable drones, expensive survivable drones, and sophisticated aerial targets. Boeing's move is seen as fallout from losing the Joint Strike Fighter project. The Pentagon is not expected to be looking for new manned combat aircraft for at least two decades, if ever.--Stephen V Cole

 


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