Boeing brings in DOD bio-defense demo work

Boeing Co. and a team of bio-defense companies will modify the ScanEagle unmanned air vehicle to look for biological warfare agents as part of a program funded by the Defense Department's Defense Threat Reduction Agency.

The two-year contract awarded to Boeing Phantom Works is worth $8.2 million. The contract is for the Biological Combat Assessment System Advanced Technology Demonstration program.

The Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the Boeing-led team will work with the Pacific Command and the Navy Third Fleet to design and develop a remote sensor system that can assess battle damage and collateral effects, employing capabilities to locate, track, collect and detect simulated biological warfare agents.

The team will integrate the sensor system into the Boeing-Insitu ScanEagle UAV and then will demonstrate the system's capabilities in flight tests. Successful flight tests will lead to a possible Phase 2 contract and limited production options worth $15 million.

Team members on the project include the Midwest Research Institute, Applied Research Associates and Steris.

The enhanced capabilities are in response to potential adversaries who can develop and deploy chemical, biological and radiological weapons of mass destruction in conflicts involving the United States, its allies and coalition partners.

Phantom Works is the advanced research and development unit and a catalyst for innovation for Boeing. It provides advanced solutions and innovative, breakthrough technologies that reduce cycle time and cost while improving the quality and performance of aerospace products and services.

Boeing, which has more than 159,000 employees and annual revenue of $54.8 billion in fiscal 2005, ranks No. 15 on Washington Technology's 2006 Top 100 list of federal prime contractors.

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Washington Technology.

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