The Spanish Navy has concluded integration trials of the Unmanned Air Vehicle ‘Skeldar V-200’ in Canary Islands waters on board the Maritime Action Ship (BAM in its Spanish initials) ‘Relámpago’ before deploying in the theatre of operations.
As of mid-September, the UAV is scheduled to operate from the BAM ‘Meteoro’, currently deployed in the Indian Ocean taking part in operation ‘Atalanta’ in the fight against piracy.
With this deployment, the Spanish Navy brings to a close one of the main milestones of the first stage of the procurement program of UAVs. The Swedish firm SAAB has been awarded a contract for the provision of services for the deployment of its ‘Skeldar V-200’ System (rotary-wing and heavy fuel) on board a Spanish Navy offshore patrol vessel in operation ‘Atalanta’.
With the expertise gained in the theatre of operations, the Spanish Navy will start the second stage of the program deciding which specific UAV model will finally procure.
Operation ‘Atalanta’ is the first naval operation led by the European Union and is a clear example of the European Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) in harmony with several UN Security Council resolutions.
The frigate ‘Navarra’ has been selected to represent Spain in EUNAVFOR’s Task Force 465 (Operation ‘Atalanta’) from July to December 2014.