Canadian Warplanes 8: Boeing Insitu RQ-21 Blackjack unmanned air vehicle (UAV)

Boeing Insitu RQ-21 Blackjack UAV

(U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Rhita Daniel)

U.S. Marines Corps RQ-21 Blackjack UAV, 2018.

Formerly called the “Integrator”, is an unmanned air vehicle originally designed and built by Boeing Institu to meet a United States Navy requirement for a small tactical unmanned air system. The air vehicle is a twin-boom, single-engine, monoplane design intended as a supplement to the previous Boeing Institu “Scan Eagle” design. The Blackjack UAV and uses the same launcher and recovery system as the Scan Eagle. Typically, one Blackjack system is composed of five air vehicles and two ground control systems, along with launch and recovery support equipment. The system supports intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions by using various payloads including day and night full-motion video cameras, an infrared marker, a laser range finder, a communications relay package, and automatic identification system receivers.

The CF is acquiring a single RQ-21 system comprising five air vehicles, two ground stations, and a launch and recovery system after leasing a number of Scan Eagle UAVs for successful shipborne and Arctic experiments / operations.

Canadian Army - 1 system with 5 aircraft ordered in 2016. A second system with 5 aircraft ordered in 2019 for delivery in summer 2022.  The DND was also the first international customer for the UAS.

Royal Canadian Navy – The RQ-21 Blackjack UAV contract was extended to include the installation of UAV launch, recovery and control capability on all Halifax-class patrol frigates. (Wikipedia)

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