SELEX Sensors & Airborne Systems, a Finmeccanica company, formed by SELEX S&AS in the UK and Galileo Avionica in Italy, has signed a letter of intent with the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) aimed at establishing a prime contracting Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) centre of excellence at ParcAberporth in Wales.

The specialized facility is to offer a systems integration capability, together with a full range of cutting-edge sensors for UAVs, stemming from the core UAV businesses of both SELEX S&AS in the UK and Galileo Avionica — sensor payloads and UAV platforms. The first system to perform flights at the new facility will be the UAV FALCO developed by Galileo Avionica to meet the growing demands of airborne surveillance, maritime and border patrol, environmental monitoring and emergency control.

According to David Lazarus, head of ISTAR & UAV marketing at SELEX S&AS UK, “The flight test facility at ParcAberporth will give SELEX S&AS as a group the opportunity to develop an improved understanding of how our UAV systems can be deployed to the best advantage and to demonstrate them to our customers.”