Shield AI wins $198M deal to provide US Coast Guard with UAS services

Defense technology company Shield AI has been awarded a contract by the U.S. Coast Guard to provide contractor owned contractor operated (COCO) intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) services.

Shield AI

As informed, the services will be implemented using the V-BAT unmanned aircraft system (UAS). 

The V-BAT series aircraft is the only operationally deployed single-engine ducted fan vertical takeoff and land (VTOL) UAS that can launch and recover from a hover and fly on wing in horizontal flight. 

Its design and controls allow it to take off & land in high winds, on crowded flight decks, and aboard moving vessels with landing zones as small as 12’ x 12’, according to Shield AI.

V-BAT supports a wide range of interchangeable and customizable payloads and sensors including, but not limited to: EO/MWIR cameras, AIS, and Land/Maritime Wide Area Search (WAS) AI-based capabilities, the company said.

US sees the UAS as capable of performing Group 2 to Group 5 UAS missions and beyond. 

“We’re excited to support the U.S. Coast Guard with their ISR operations. All maritime vessels will become drone carriers as maritime forces move to deploy distributed, affordable, intelligent drones. V-BAT’s selection by the U.S. Coast Guard is indicative of a broader market movement where increasingly customers are recognizing they can accomplish the vast majority of their mission sets with affordable drones rather than exquisite, expensive crewed or uncrewed aircraft,” said Brandon Tseng, Shield AI’s President, Co-founder, and former Navy SEAL.