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Air Warfare

USSOCOM places order for Switchblade 600

27th April 2021 - 15:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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AeroVironment is delivering its Switchblade 600 system to USSOCOM for precision engagement of naval and littoral threats. (Photo: AeroVironment)

Loitering munition system to be installed on maritime platforms used by US special forces.

US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) is procuring an undisclosed number of Switchblade 600 loitering munition systems, manufacturer AeroVironment revealed on 27 April.

The order was placed on 31 March for delivery and integration of Switchblade 600s into specialised maritime platforms, for precision engagement of naval and littoral threats.

AeroVironment expects to complete deliveries to USSOCOM by January 2023.

Switchblade 600 is an all-in-one, man-portable solution equipped with a high-performance EO/IR gimballed sensor suite, precision flight control and more than 40min of flight time for ISTAR.

The loitering munition consists of a simple box-shaped fuselage with two pairs of folding wings and two tail fins.

According to Shephard Defence Insight, a single system contains a 22.7kg Switchblade 600 munition, a self-contained tube-launcher, a touch-screen ground control system and an antenna.

The entire system can be fitted into two 180cm x 46cm x 43cm transportable cases. The case which houses the launcher and munition weighs 40.8kg, while the other case weighs 54.1kg.  

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