Ahead of a planned delivery to the first RQ-21 Blackjack export customer later this month, Insitu (Stand S9-115) is holding a conference at DSEI to promote the benefits of the UAV to potential export nations.
The first export example to be delivered to the Canadian Army has rolled off the production line, and is expected to be shipped in the coming weeks, Insitu said. Canada ordered one system − five air vehicles, two ground control stations, one pneumatic launcher and one Skyhook recovery system − in 2016, making it the first foreign military sale customer for the type. The US Navy and US Marine Corps also operate the Blackjack, the latter having deployed it with the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit in 2016.
Now the company is looking to promote the UAV further, and is holding a special conference today alongside Col John Neville, programme manager for the US Navy and Marine Corps Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft Systems programme office (PMA-263). Target customers will include NATO, the Five Eyes, Brazil, India, Japan and the GCC, all of which will be informed of the successes of the Blackjack programme, including its support during the anti-Islamic State Operation Inherent Resolve effort in the Middle East.