The British Army has ordered an undisclosed number of BLACK HORNET 3 Personal Reconnaissance Systems (PRS) from FLIR Systems in a contract valued at $1.8 million (€1.6 million), the company announced on 15 April.
The order is for an experimental procurement of the combat-proven system and is part of the Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Transformation Fund Rapid Procurement Initiative. Units delivered under the contract will support platoon- and troop-level surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. They also will be used in part for a test and evaluation of nano-unmanned aircraft system (UAS) capabilities to enhance situational awareness on the frontlines.
“In 2013, the British Army was the first military force to deploy this technology in an active combat zone with troops operating in Afghanistan,” commented President of FLIR’s Government and Defense Business Unit, David Ray. “We are pleased they have again chosen FLIR for its nano-UAS solution and we are proud to provide the BLACK HORNET 3, our latest version of this revolutionary, lifesaving technology, to soldiers on the battlefield.”
Weighing 32g with a flight time of up to 25 mins, the nearly silent, pocket-sized BLACK HORNET 3 transmits live video and high-definition still images back to the operator. Its information feed provides soldiers with immediate covert situational awareness to help them more effectively complete their mission. FLIR has delivered more than 7,000 BLACK HORNETs to military customers worldwide, and this new contract with the British Army expands use of the BLACK HORNET PRS for military surveillance and reconnaissance programmes.
FLIR will manufacture the systems in Hvalstad, Norway, with deliveries to begin immediately and be completed within six months.