Boeing Defense, Space & Security is expanding a 2014 agreement with the Paramount Group to develop a new variant of a light aircraft used for reconnaissance and ‘counter-insurgency’ missions. The Advanced, High Performance, Reconnaissance, Light Aircraft (AHRLAC) was developed by a joint venture of Paramount Group and Aerosud as a low-cost alternative to unmanned aerial vehicles (i.e., drones).
Debuting in 2014, the AHRLAC is two-seat winged aircraft with several variants: civil/private, policing/anti-poaching, training, safety/security, and military.
Under the new agreement terms, Boeing will develop an integrated mission system for the aircraft that will make possible “intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR)” and light strike missions for new safety/security and military variants of the AHRLAC. The militarized version of the aircraft will be known as Mwari.
Paramount is a South African holding company for firms involved in defense, security, and peacekeeping activities. It is the largest privately owned defense and aerospace business in Africa.
Jeffrey Johnson, vice president - business development for Boeing Military Aircraft, said the Paramount venture would help Boeing access new customer markets.
"Through AHRLAC, we'll not only bring a flexible, persistent and affordable aircraft to the international market, but we'll also be developing world-class technology in Africa," he said.