£195m contract signed for 13 additional RAF Protectors

A £195 million contract for a further 13 cutting-edge Protector aircraft has been signed. Defence Minister Jeremy Quin announced the new contract during a visit to GKN Aerospace (GKNA), who are manufacturing key parts of air…

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Read that without paying attention as 'protestors'. I know all the hotel jokes but £15 million for a bit of shouting and waving placards seemed expensive.

A picture for a better sense of scale

Protector%20at%20Grand%20Forks.jpg
 

Allan74

Old-Salt
And way cheaper than a manned aircraft. I mean how expensive is a Portakabin, office chairs, monitors and milk for the fridge in somewhere glamorous like Lincolnshire?
 
And way cheaper than a manned aircraft. I mean how expensive is a Portakabin, office chairs, monitors and milk for the fridge in somewhere glamorous like Lincolnshire?
Plus they can be dispersed
 
Spot on. Cheaper to train drone pilots as well...no need for years of flight training for pilots.

If they are to be used in controlled airspace - the 95% of your pilots training and knowledge is still required -

It may be simpler to use qualified pilots as RPV operators.

I suppose you can save some training and selection costs as the pilot doesnt have to be fast jet qualified but thats going to be about it

Edit Id hang fire on the cheaper to buy and operate as well

The airframe is - however the ground station (s) and associated flight? stations all need to be Aviation certified ie meet the same reliability / accuracy and quality of their counterparts monted in an aircraft. In other words your ground station costs almost as much as fighters cockpit - More if you want it to be dispersed ie vehicle mounted not in a building on the airfield.
 

Allan74

Old-Salt
If they are to be used in controlled airspace - the 95% of your pilots training and knowledge is still required -

It may be simpler to use qualified pilots as RPV operators.

I suppose you can save some training and selection costs as the pilot doesnt have to be fast jet qualified but thats going to be about it

Edit Id hang fire on the cheaper to buy and operate as well

The airframe is - however the ground station (s) and associated flight? stations all need to be Aviation certified ie meet the same reliability / accuracy and quality of their counterparts monted in an aircraft. In other words your ground station costs almost as much as fighters cockpit - More if you want it to be dispersed ie vehicle mounted not in a building on the airfield.
Seems also the RAF cry of,

"We're the RAF, we must have manned jets otherwise chaps with an odd predilection for Brylcream, Blue Suits and razor straight side partings won't join us.

I mean who wants to sit in a Portakabin not a million miles away from Grimsby."
 
Seems also the RAF cry of,

"We're the RAF, we must have manned jets otherwise chaps with an odd predilection for Brylcream, Blue Suits and razor straight side partings won't join us.

I mean who wants to sit in a Portakabin not a million miles away from Grimsby."

Its not the RAF whove deemed it to be the case - They are however obliged to comply.

Of course this same issue applies to watchkeeper and is responsible for its much delayed entry into service** Are you also applying a similar argument to those in the army wearing pastel blue Berets.


**Hermes has been operational for years - but isnt compliant -
 

Allan74

Old-Salt
Its not the RAF whove deemed it to be the case - They are however obliged to comply.

Of course this same issue applies to watchkeeper and is responsible for its much delayed entry into service** Are you also applying a similar argument to those in the army wearing pastel blue Berets.


**Hermes has been operational for years - but isnt compliant -
Either abolish the AAC and give it to the RAF or abolish the RAF and give it to the Army.
 

Dread

LE
Seems also the RAF cry of,

"We're the RAF, we must have manned jets otherwise chaps with an odd predilection for Brylcream, Blue Suits and razor straight side partings won't join us.

I mean who wants to sit in a Portakabin not a million miles away from Grimsby."

It's ok: they'll deploy to the lobby of the nearest Marriott hotel.
 

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