DEVELOPMENTS (Dec. 1, 2009)
New Kind of Predator
As 4GWAR reported in its initial posting, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will unveil its new maritime Predator B unmanned surveillance aircraft next Monday, Dec. 7. CBP Assistant Commissioner Michael Kostelnik will take delivery of the first Predator maritime variant at the Gray Butte Flight Operations Facility of Predator maker General Atomics in Palmdale, Calif.
Kostelnik will be joined by Admiral Thad Allen, the Coast Guard’s commandant, and the man behind the Predator: General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Group President Thomas Cassidy Jr. CBP and the Coast Guard, both Homeland Security Dept. agencies, have been working closely for more than a year to develop an unmanned aircraft that can patrol U.S. waters. (see Nov. 8 posting in Homeland Security).
The maritime Predator variant will be known as the Guardian Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS).
Drones over England
Police in Essex, England are looking at adopting unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) used by the military for surveillance in Afghanistan to combat illegal immigration and drug smuggling, according to the Daily Gazette. The news site says BAE is looking into adopting the HERTI for border and coastal patrol and the GA22 for hovering over major events.
Entry filed under: Aircraft, National Security and Defense, News Developments, Unmanned Aircraft, Unmanned Systems. Tags: Coast Guard, counter terrorism, Customs and Border Protection, drones, drug smuggling, General Atomics, Homeland Security, International Crime, UAS, UAV, unmanned aircraft.