> our title:

US Seen Spending $42Bn on UAVs Through 2016

> original title:

United States Department of Defense to Spend $41.7 Billion on Unmanned Aerial Systems Through 2016

(Source: G2 Solutions; issued June 14, 2011)


KIRKLAND, Wash. --- A new research note from G2 Solutions, “DoD UAS Forecasts, Programs and Initiatives,” is available. Report AB093 is a detailed 7-year U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) procurement and research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E) analysis of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) spending.

“We wanted to take a fresh look at DoD UAS spending, and the 2012 Budget Justification Documents gave us this opportunity,” said G2 Solutions research director Ron Stearns. “We thoroughly analyzed 26 different budget justification documents and pulled any UAS-relevant procurement or RDT&E line items. From this we assembled a 7-year forecast for aircraft production, command and control, sensors and Program of Record (PoR) specific spending.”

The 60-page report provides market share information over time for companies such as Northrop Grumman Corporation, General Atomics ASI and AAI Corporation. It also includes PoR spending profiles at the procurement and RDT&E levels. This enables readers to see spending over time tied to specific upgrades in Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), command and control (C2) or aircraft upgrades.

The RDT&E evaluation examines spending on new-build UAS programs such as the Next-Generation Bomber, the Unmanned Carrier Launched Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) and the Medium Range Maritime UAS.

“The RDT&E piece is important, because the numbers show a procurement decrease over time in high-velocity programs such as MQ-1, RQ-4, MQ-8 and MQ-1C,” Stearns said. “It’s upgrades and RDT&E on new programs that brings us to a steady state spend of about $6 billion per year over time. The shift between procurement and RDT&E expenditures will lead to investments on new-build UAS programs.”

The report also explains the “why” behind acquisition and spending, namely the importance of UAS in current Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) and what capabilities will be paramount for the next generations of DoD UAS.

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