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U.S. Marines Test Kratos XQ-58A Valkyrie as Low-Cost UAV Option

Wingman drone

U.S. Marines Test Kratos XQ-58A Valkyrie as Low-Cost UAV Option

The Marine Corps has completed the first test flight of Kratos Defense & Security Solutions’ XQ-58A Valkyrie unmanned air vehicle, a step toward integrating the jet-powered UAV into the Penetrating Affordable Autonomous Collaborative Killer–Portfolio program. The first of two XQ-58A Valkyrie was delivered to the Marines in March to support platform prototyping and integration efforts for the PAACK-P program.

Future test flights are also lined up to gauge XQ-58A Valkyrie requirements for the Marine Air-Ground Task Force Unmanned Aerial System Expeditionary Tactical Aircraft, Kratos said

Besides the Marines, Kratos’ partners in the research, development, test and evaluation of the XQ-58A Valkyrie for the service are the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, the Naval Air Systems Command and Naval Warfare Center Aircraft Division. 

The XQ-58A Valkyrie is designed as a low-cost and high-performance UAV capable of high-subsonic flights, which can function as a loyal wingman, go as a single operative or fly in swarm missions. The UAV has earned notice under the Marine Corps’ extensive experimentation on new systems under Force Design 2030.

Mostly identified under the U.S. Air Force Loyal Wingman program, Valkyrie has been flown by the Air Force Research Laboratory as an experimental unit to demonstrate artificial intelligence-enabled airborne operations.