PROVIDENCE, R.I., Sept. 17 (UPI) -- A prototype aircraft for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions, as well as light attack operations, has been unveiled by Textron AirLand LLC.
The Scorpion, a twin-engine jet aircraft, is now in its test phase and is scheduled to make its first flight before the end of the year, the company said.
"We began development of the Scorpion in January 2012 with the objective to design, build and fly the world's most affordable tactical jet aircraft capable of performing lower-threat battlefield and homeland security missions," Textron Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Scott Donnelly said. "We relied on commercial best practices to develop a tactical jet platform with flexibility and capabilities found only in far more costly aircraft."
Textron AirLand is a joint venture between Textron Inc. and AirLand Enterprises LLC.
The Scorpion is suited for irregular warfare, border patrol, maritime surveillance, emergency relief, counter-narcotics and air defense operations. Textron said the Scorpion was designed with an eye towards budget constraints of the U.S. Department of Defense and allied nations.