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Red Cat looks to partnerships to expand Teal 2’s wings

3rd May 2024 - 15:05 GMT | by Wilder Alejandro Sanchez in Washington, DC


The Teal 2 UAV on show display at Modern Day Marine 2024. (Photo: Wilder Alejandro Sanchez)

Teal 2 UAV producer Red Cat has unveiled its strategic partnerships and advancements in drone technology in anticipation of the US Army’s decision on the Short-Range Reconnaissance (SRR) programme.

Red Cat, the producer of the Teal 2 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), has teamed up with select partners to diversify the capabilities of its drones while awaiting a decision by the US Army for the SRR programme for portable UAVs.

Shephard spoke with Stan Nowak, vice-president of marketing at Red Cat, during the recent Modern Day Marine (MDM) expo in Washington, DC, about what is on the horizon for the company.

Regarding the US Army’s SRR programme, the company will submit its new prototype by 17 May for the service’s initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E). Red Cat has been one of two companies shortlisted for the SRR programme, which has entered its final stages. A decision will be expected “by this Fall, between Q3 and Q4”, Nowak explained.

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The company said it would utilise the prototype developed specifically for the SRR programme as the basis for Red Cat’s next evolution UAV.

At Special Operations Forces (SOF) Week, to be held in Tampa, Florida, on 6–10 May, Red Cat will announce the creation of a consortium called the Red Cat Futures Initiative. The initiative will aim to offer a client not just Red Cat’s Teal drone, but also the option to obtain additional payloads and capabilities from Red Cat’s partners.

“We have received support from both existing and potential customers about this initiative,” Nowak explained.

Red Cat’s other objective has been to increase capabilities through partnerships.

“We do not need to do everything ourselves,” Nowak explained. “It is better to team up with other companies who are specialists in what they do.”

On 18 April, the company announced a partnership with Sentien Robotics to develop hive capabilities for its Teal 2 drone for land, air and sea swarming operations.

“We want the user to be capable of operating multi-domain swarms of 12 to 80 drones from a vehicle like a Polaris MRAZR or a USV like the WAM-V from Ocean Power Technologies (OPT),” he explained.

The company has partnered with OPT for sea operations. Using OPT’s PowerBuoy and WAM-V platforms, Teal 2 Drones can be powered up at sea to “leverage autonomous surface vessels (USVs) to assess and address maritime threats”, Nowak noted. The idea would be for OPT buoys to recharge its USVs at sea, which will also carry Red Cat’s drone solutions, extending the operator’s surveillance capabilities.

“We expect testing to begin sometime in 2025,” he explained.

While the Teal 2 has been primarily utilised for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions, the company has been aiming for its drone to carry lethal payloads. One concept was to provide inexpensive Sensor-to-Shooter (under US$100,000 in value) solutions “by deploying systems with two drones”.

“One locates the target and the other carries the lethal solution,” Nowak explained. Testing will be expected in late-2024/early-2025.

Wilder Alejandro Sanchez


Wilder Alejandro Sanchez

Wilder Alejandro Sánchez is an analyst who covers defense & security, geopolitical, and trade issues …

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