U.S. Army Places $20.4 Million Order for AeroVironment RQ-20A Puma AE Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems

April 20, 2012
  • Puma production milestone achieved with 1,000th air vehicle 
  • United States Air Force assigns Mission Design Series designation RQ-20A to Puma AE system

MONROVIA, Calif., April 20, 2012 ? AeroVironment (NASDAQ: AVAV) today announced it received a firm fixed-price order valued at $20,430,433 from the U.S. Army for RQ-20A Puma AE® small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) on March 27, 2012. The Puma AE systems will provide intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities for security, route clearance operations and overall battle space awareness to U.S. forces in Afghanistan. Delivery is scheduled within 30 days.

Separately, AeroVironment announced the production and delivery of its 1,000th Puma AE air vehicle, reflecting strong interest in and demand for the capabilities provided by the Puma AE system. In parallel, the United States Air Force approved the Mission Design Series designation RQ-20A for the Puma AE UAS. This designation establishes the Puma system alongside AeroVironment's RQ-11B Raven®; system as a designated military aircraft.

"The Puma AE system continues to provide critical force protection and force multiplication capabilities to our military at a fraction of the cost of larger manned and unmanned aircraft systems," said Tom Herring, AeroVironment senior vice president and general manager of its Unmanned Aircraft Systems business segment. "Our small unmanned systems are ideal as they give small tactical units eyes in the sky surveillance and intelligence over a broad area."

The United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) selected the Puma UAS in 2008 for its AECV program after a full and open competition, the fourth U.S. Department of Defense competition for programs of record involving small UAS and the fourth such competition won by AeroVironment. In 2011 the United States Army assumed management of the AECV program. Each Puma system consists of three air vehicles and two ground control systems. The air vehicle carries an integrated electro-optical and infrared gimbaled video camera, is designed for enhanced survivability in land and maritime environments, and can operate effectively in foul weather and over rugged terrain. Its quiet operation, stabilized imagery and precision landing capability make Puma systems easy to operate and recover. The Puma air vehicle weighs 13 pounds, is battery powered and has a flight endurance of two hours.


About AeroVironment, Inc. (AV)

AeroVironment (NASDAQ: AVAV) provides customers with more actionable intelligence so they can proceed with certainty. Based in California, AeroVironment is a global leader in unmanned aircraft systems and tactical missile systems, and serves defense, government and commercial customers. For more information visit www.avinc.com.


Safe Harbor Statement

Certain statements in this press release may constitute "forward-looking statements" as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are made on the basis of current expectations, forecasts and assumptions that involve risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, economic, competitive, governmental and technological factors outside of our control, that may cause our business, strategy or actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, our ability to perform under existing contracts and obtain additional contracts; changes in the regulatory environment; the activities of competitors; failure of the markets in which we operate to grow; failure to expand into new markets; failure to develop new products or integrate new technology with current products; and general economic and business conditions in the United States and elsewhere in the world. For a further list and description of such risks and uncertainties, see the reports we file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We do not intend, and undertake no obligation, to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


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