DARPA Grounds AeroVironment Drone Contract


AeroVironment Inc. was turned down for a contract under which it would have continued to develop a new unmanned aircraft for use by the U.S. Navy, the company said Tuesday.

The Monrovia company had previously received more than $20 million from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, in 2013 and 2014 to develop a medium-altitude, long-endurance surveillance and reconnaissance drone that could operate from small ships.

The company said that not receiving the new contract will have no impact on its stated 2016 fiscal year guidance.

“We thank DARPA for the opportunity to apply our innovation toward developing a next generation unmanned aircraft system to protect United States Navy personnel,” said Kirk Flittie, general manager of AeroVironment’s unmanned aircraft business segment, in a prepared statement.

AeroVironment shares closed down 94 cents, or 4.7 percent, to $19.25 on Tuesday.

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