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MBDA's Brimstone missile planned for Britain's Protector drone

By
Ryan Maass
MBDA Missile Systems says their precision strike missile will be ideal for enabling the Protector to hit fast-moving targets. Image courtesy MBDA Missile Systems
MBDA Missile Systems says their precision strike missile will be ideal for enabling the Protector to hit fast-moving targets. Image courtesy MBDA Missile Systems

STEVENAGE, England, Dec. 8 (UPI) -- Britain is planning to arm its new Protector remotely piloted aircraft with MBDA's Brimstone precision strike missile.

If confirmed by the U.K.'s Ministry of Defense, the new drone will enter service with the British weapon after its development is complete. News of the consideration comes days after the ministry signed off on a $127 million contract with General Atomics to develop the new unmanned aircraft.

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In a press release, MBDA announced it will be working alongside the ministry, General Atomics, and the U.S. Department of Defense for integration trials and test firings while the program progresses. The company notes the Brimstone missile has been heavily used already by the MQ-9 Reaper, the predecessor for Britain's new aircraft.

The Brimstone missile is designed for hitting fast-moving targets from autonomous platforms. The weapon has also been integrated with helicopters and fixed-wing fighters such as the Typhoon. MBDA Systems stresses the missile has demonstrated its versatility from years of service across a variety of platforms.

"Brimstone offers customers the ability to have one missile that can operate across their fleet of operational aircraft, whether they are jets, RPAS or helicopters," MBDA's U.K. sales and business development director James Allibone said. "One missile for all platforms means customers benefit from simplified and more efficient training, logistics and inventory management as well as Brimstone's outstanding precision against the most challenging of targets."

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