The US Navy plans to buy new XQ-58A Valkyrie killer drones

XQ-58A Valkyrie

A Department of Defense press release on contracted acquisitions says that the U.S. Navy has confirmed that it will buy two XQ-58A Valkyrie drones as part of its Penetrating Affordable Autonomous Collaborative Killer. These XQ-58A drones have only been utilized by the United States Air Force thus far.
The U.S. Navy's move is in line with an international trend toward the testing of low-cost, unmanned aircraft for disposable missions, which helps keep expensive, cutting-edge fighters and their highly trained crews out of harm's way.

Russia has also used cheap Iranian drones in the continuing conflict in Ukraine. When used in large groups, these drones may be able to quickly take out even the most advanced air defense systems. The U.S. Navy is probably also thinking along these lines and planning to use a killer drone to eliminate the last vestiges of the enemy air defense; however, information on the penetrating, affordable, autonomous, collaborative killer project is sketchy at best.

XQ-58A Valkyrie
Kratos XQ58A Valkyrie

The Kratos XQ58A Valkyrie is an excellent drone for many reasons 

Kratos Defense's XQ-58 A Valkyrie is a prototype stealth unmanned combat aerial vehicle with a maximum speed of nearly 650 miles (1,046 kilometers) per hour and a range of 3,500 miles (6,048 kilometers) (5,600 kilometers). The unmanned plane was made by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) as part of their Low-Cost Attritable Aircraft Technology (LCAAT) project, which was paid for by the US Air Force.

The XQ-58A can drop a variety of deadly weapons from its internal bomb bay or from under its wings. The drone's effectiveness stems from its rocket-assisted static launcher takeoff and parachute-assisted landing. The drone doesn't need a runway to take off or land, making it useful in even the most dangerous combat zones. It's inexpensive enough to be used as a disposable aircraft.

The US Navy will receive Kratos Model XQ-58A Valkyrie stealth drones

Contract specifications for two XQ-58A Valkyrie drones with sensor and weapons payloads for the United States Navy include non-recurring engineering, system/subsystem integration, logistics, maintenance, and contractor-operated operations at government test ranges.

Moreover, this contract was granted without a competitive bidding process since it falls under 10 U.S. Code 4023, which permits such awards solely for experimental reasons. Whatever the United States Navy plans to do with these unmanned aircraft must be carried out by the end of 2023, as the contract work must be finished by September 2023.

Buying a single Valkyrie drone can cost as much as $4 million, as reported by The Drive. Previously, the U.S. Air Force had scrapped its Valkyrie drones after only three test flights, without even giving them a chance to be upgraded. The United States Navy has already experimented with crewed-uncrewed operations with Kratos' UTAP-22 Mako Drone, and it is possible that it might do the same with the Valkyrie, albeit in a more lethal drone configuration.

No matter what is tried, the U.S. Navy can choose from a wide variety of drones produced by companies including Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, General Atomics, and Boeing.

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