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Another detail has emerged on the BAE Systems, Dassault Aviation effort to jointly provide a medium-altitude, long-endurance UAV system to the U.K. and France. The program name is now Telemos.Why that name? According to the companies: "Telemos was the prophetic son of Eurymos, known for having the vision and foresight to warn Polyphemus about an attack by Odysseus." The two companies are still waiting for a joint requirements for the two governments, as well as details over the acquisition strategy. Much will hinge on those decisions, including the schedule and the exact system configuration, although the BAE Systems Mantis UAV demonstrator is serving as a design departure point. The current plan calls for BAE Systems to be responsible for defining the aircraft and engine selection—turbofans and turboprops are still in the mix—while Dassault would focus on systems integration and testing.Other companies may still make a run at challenging BAE Systems and Dassault for the contract. However, given the deal appears to have the backing of governments following November's broader Franco-British defense cooperation agreement, an outside offering may face an uphill struggle.
ar99, Dassault, BAE, PAS11, unmanned
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