BAE Selects GE Fanuc Embedded Systems' RT4 for Taranis UAV Program

GE Fanuc Embedded Systems announced that the company’s RT4 had been selected by BAE Systems for deployment within the UK Ministry of Defence’s Taranis technology demonstrator program to support the development of a world class UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle). The RT4 was designed and manufactured by Radstone Embedded Computing at its Towcester, England headquarters: Radstone was recently acquired by GE Fanuc Embedded Systems.

The RT4 is a small form factor CompactPCI-based rugged compute node with four conduction-cooled 3U slots, one of which is pre-loaded with the IMP2A single board computer. It features a high integrity bonded section chassis construction to provide exceptional strength, while the I/O connector panel and backplane are formed as a single, removable, assembly for ease of maintenance.

“We’re delighted to have been chosen by BAE Systems to take part in this highly prestigious program,” said Peter Cavill of GE Fanuc Embedded Systems. “The effort to develop a leading edge unmanned aerial vehicle solution requires the adoption of leading edge technologies, and we’re pleased that BAE Systems sees the RT4 as delivering the combination of performance, reliability and robustness that is needed for Taranis.”

BAE Systems, together with Rolls-Royce, Smiths Aerospace and QinetiQ, will work alongside UK Ministry of Defence military staff and scientists to develop and fly Taranis. Named after the Celtic god of thunder, Taranis will explore and demonstrate how emerging technologies and systems can deliver battle-winning capabilities for the UK armed forces.

The four-year Taranis project, part of the UK Government’s Strategic Unmanned Air Vehicle (Experimental) Programme [SUAV(E)], will result in a UAV with fully integrated autonomous systems and low observable features. The project is jointly funded by the UK Ministry of Defence and UK industry, and will bring together a number of technologies, capabilities and systems to produce a technology demonstrator based around a fully autonomous intelligent system. Ground testing of Taranis is expected to take place in early 2009 with the first flight trials taking place in 2010.

About GE Fanuc Embedded Systems
GE Fanuc Embedded Systems is a leading global provider of embedded computing solutions for a wide range of industries and applications. Featuring a comprehensive offering that includes Intel(R) and PowerPC(R)-based Single Board Computers, sensor processing networking products, avionics interfaces, rugged flat panel monitors and complete computer systems, GE Fanuc Embedded Systems can support the full range of embedded computing needs. GE Fanuc Embedded Systems is part of GE Fanuc, a joint venture between GE (NYSE: GE) and FANUC LTD of Japan.