Spain signs deal with Airbus for SiRTAP MALE UAS
Spain’s MoD has inked a deal with Airbus for the development and purchase of Sistema RPAS Táctico de Altas Prestaciones (SiRTAP) multirole medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) UAS.
The contract has included a total of nine systems, each consisting of three UAVs. One ground control station and two simulators will be supplied to train the Spanish Armed Forces.
Jean-Brice Dumont, head of military air systems at Airbus Defence and Space, said the development of the system solely in Spain would support national sovereignty and help to integrate national capabilities.
‘[Additionally] the fact the system uses ITAR-free components means we also expect it to play a key role on the international market,’ Dumont noted.
Primarily designed for ISTAR operations, the modular UAV can be outfitted for other mission sets and will be certified to fly in segregated airspace.
The UAV will be able to carry a payload of more than 150kg and will have a range of more than 2,000km with an endurance of more than 20h.
First flight of the SiRTAP prototype will be expected to take place in 2025. Colombia, which has a role in the development and production programme, is a planned customer and in July 2023 Serbia announced it was planning to join the programme.
Shephard Defence Insight estimated, based on information about Spain's purchase of 27 units at an investment of US$565.18 million, that each unit would cost $20.9 million and have a flyaway unit cost of $16.7 million.
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