AAI to Demonstrate Aerosonde(R) Mark 4.7 Small Unmanned Aircraft System During Bahrain International Airshow

January 15, 2010
Flights to Highlight System Endurance and Launch/Recovery Flexibility
HUNT VALLEY, Md., Jan 15, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- AAI Corporation, an operating unit of Textron Systems, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced today that it will conduct a flying display of its Aerosonde Mark 4.7 small unmanned aircraft system (SUAS) at the Bahrain International Airshow scheduled for January 21-23 at the Sakhir Air Base in Bahrain. This will be the first public flight in the region of the Aerosonde Mark 4.7 system, AAI's submission for the joint U.S. Navy and Marine Corps Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System (STUAS)/Tier II competition.

"We are delighted to be able to fly our Aerosonde Mark 4.7 SUAS at such an important international event," says Middle East Unmanned Aircraft Systems Marketing Director James Masey of AAI. "Bahrain International Airshow attendees will have the opportunity to witness the Aerosonde Mark 4.7 aircraft's automated launch and recovery operations, as well as view a live, full-motion video feed from the aircraft's payload."

AAI's Aerosonde Mark 4.7 SUAS is a lightweight, expeditionary system that can be transported easily in a single C-130 Hercules(R) aircraft and quickly, simply deployed in theater.

"Our Aerosonde fleet offers superior endurance and a low acoustic profile for reliable performance of multiple mission profiles," explains Stephen Flach, AAI's division vice president of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems. "In addition, the Aerosonde Mark 4.7 SUAS is cost effective, has a small footprint, and is flexible enough for launch and recovery from shipboard or small clearings."

The Aerosonde Mark 4.7 system also incorporates AAI's unique Launch and Recovery Trailer, comprised of an AAI-proprietary Sliding Frame Launcher and hydraulically actuated Soft Hands(TM) Net Recovery System. The Launch and Recovery Trailer enables easy, automatic aircraft launch and recovery, minimizes risk of aircraft damage during recovery, and streamlines shipboard operations.

The Bahrain International Airshow display is the latest in several recent Aerosonde Mark 4.7 SUAS flights conducted by AAI. Among these was a multi-day exercise aboard the 88-foot (27-meter) M-80 Stiletto, highlighting the system's easy-to-use, automated shipboard launch and recovery capability.

About AAI

AAI Corporation designs, produces, and supports aerospace and defense systems through its indirect wholly owned subsidiaries Aerosonde Pty Ltd and ESL Defence Limited. Its high-technology products and services include unmanned aircraft systems, training and simulation systems, automated aerospace test and maintenance equipment, armament systems and logistical, engineering, and supply chain services. AAI Corporation is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Textron Inc. More information is available at http://www.aaicorp.com.

About Textron Systems

Textron Systems Corporation has been providing innovative solutions to the defense, homeland security and aerospace communities for more than 50 years. Known for its unmanned aircraft systems, advanced marine craft, armored vehicles, intelligent battlefield and surveillance systems, intelligence software solutions, precision smart weapons, piston engines, test and training systems, and total life cycle sustainment services, Textron Systems includes AAI Corporation, Lycoming Engines, Overwatch, Textron Defense Systems and Textron Marine & Land Systems. Textron Systems Corporation is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Textron Inc. More information is available at http://www.textronsystems.com.

About Textron Inc.

Textron Inc. is a multi-industry company that leverages its global network of aircraft, defense, industrial and finance businesses to provide customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around the world for its powerful brands such as Bell Helicopter, Cessna Aircraft Company, Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO, Greenlee, and Textron Systems. More information is available at http://www.textron.com.

AAI is a registered trademark of AAI Corporation.

Aerosonde is a registered trademark of Aerosonde Pty Ltd.

C-130 Hercules is a registered trademark of Lockheed Martin Corporation.

Soft Hands is a trademark of AAI Corporation.

SOURCE: Textron

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