Kratos Demonstrates XQ-58A Electronic Warfare Capabilities for United States Marine Corps

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Kratos Defense & Security Solutions successfully demonstrates XQ-58A's capabilities in a live flight test event, marking a milestone in the PAACK-P program. The XQ-58A Valkyrie showcases advanced electronic attack capabilities and operational flexibility, promising increased lethality and survivability for the US Marine Corps.
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The recent demonstration by Kratos Defense & Security Solutions of the XQ-58A Valkyrie's capabilities in conjunction with F-35 aircraft represents a significant step forward in unmanned systems integration within the U.S. military's tactical framework. This advancement is not simply a technical feat but also a strategic enhancement, potentially altering the dynamics of air combat and defense procurement. The XQ-58A's ability to deliver an integrated electronic attack while flying alongside crewed fighters could shift the paradigm of force multiplication, offering a cost-effective means to enhance the capabilities of existing platforms.

From a business perspective, the successful completion of the first phase of the PAACK-P program and the ongoing Phase 2 contract modification could lead to increased demand for Kratos' unmanned systems. The focus on affordability and survivability, coupled with the XQ-58A's performance in SEAD roles, aligns with the Department of Defense's goals to develop force multipliers that can operate in contested environments without escalating costs. The potential for the Valkyrie to operate autonomously or in swarms adds to its tactical versatility, which could be a key selling point for future contracts and international sales.

Investors should note the implications of such technological advancements on Kratos' market position, as well as the broader defense sector. The shift towards autonomous systems and the integration of AI in combat scenarios is likely to spur further innovation and competition, potentially benefiting companies that are at the forefront of these developments.

The integration of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) like the XQ-58A Valkyrie into the Marine Air-Ground Task Force highlights a strategic pivot towards autonomous capabilities in U.S. defense policy. This move towards unmanned systems reflects a broader trend in military spending, where there is an increasing emphasis on nimble, cost-effective solutions that can complement and enhance the capabilities of crewed aircraft. The Valkyrie's successful demonstration of integrated electronic attack capabilities is a testament to its potential role in Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses (SEAD), a critical aspect of modern air warfare.

For stakeholders in the defense industry, the progression of the PAACK-P program and the Valkyrie's capabilities are indicative of the Marine Corps' commitment to investing in next-generation technologies. The emphasis on the system's affordability suggests that Kratos could be well-positioned to secure further contracts, both domestically and internationally, as nations seek to modernize their defense capabilities without incurring prohibitive costs.

Long-term, the success of the Valkyrie and similar systems could lead to a reshaping of military procurement strategies, with increased allocations for autonomous and semi-autonomous systems. This could have a ripple effect on the supply chain, with increased opportunities for companies specializing in AI, cybersecurity and advanced materials that are integral to the development of UAS.

The announcement by Kratos Defense & Security Solutions regarding the XQ-58A Valkyrie's capabilities and its integration with F-35 aircraft has potential financial implications for the company and its investors. The successful demonstration under the PAACK-P program could be seen as a validation of Kratos' research and development efforts, potentially leading to an increase in the company's valuation. Additionally, the $22.9M Phase 2 contract modification is a non-negligible revenue stream, which could positively impact Kratos' financial performance in the short to medium term.

However, investors should exercise caution and consider the competitive landscape of the defense sector, where contract awards are highly competitive and subject to geopolitical dynamics. While the news is positive, it is essential to monitor the company's ability to secure subsequent contracts and manage production costs effectively. Furthermore, the long-term financial benefits will depend on the Valkyrie's adoption rate within the U.S. military and potential interest from allied nations.

Overall, the demonstrated capabilities of the XQ-58A and the ongoing support from the Department of Defense are likely to be viewed favorably by the market. Still, the company's future financial performance will be closely tied to its ability to capitalize on this momentum and expand its role in the burgeoning field of autonomous military systems.

SAN DIEGO, April 02, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ:KTOS), a leading National Security Solutions provider, announced that Kratos Unmanned Systems Division has successfully demonstrated the ability of the XQ-58A to fly in concert with two F-35 aircraft and the ability to deliver an integrated electronic attack (EA) capability on the XQ-58A Valkyrie aircraft during a live flight test event at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida. The demonstration completes the first phase of the United States Marine Corps’ Penetrating Affordable Autonomous Collaborative Killer – Portfolio (PAACK-P) program. Flight test support was provided by the 40th Flight Test Squadron, 96th Test Wing. All flight test objectives were successfully met.

Valkyrie in Flight with Crewed 5th Gen Fighters

Valkyrie in Flight with Crewed 5th Gen Fighters
"The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement."
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A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

The demonstration follows the award of a $22.9M “Phase 2” contract modification on December 4, 2023 for additional engineering development and flight test demonstrations, and marks a significant milestone in the PAACK-P program as the Headquarters Marine Corps Aviation Cunningham Group and Advanced Development Team, Marine Corps Warfighting Lab, the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OUSD(R&E)), the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR), and Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) AIRWorks continue to inform MQ-58B requirements for the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Expeditionary (MUX) Tactical Aircraft (TACAIR) for use in a Suppression of Enemy Air Defense (SEAD) role.

The XQ-58A’s advanced EA payload autonomously detected, identified, and geolocated multiple tactically relevant targets of interest, transmitted emitter target track coordinates to collaborative assets, and successfully presented non-kinetic electronic attack effects against multiple emitters. Flying since 2019, the Kratos XQ-58A Valkyrie is a high-performance, runway-independent tactical UAV capable of long-range flights at high-subsonic speeds. The Valkyrie can serve as a loyal wingman, conduct single UAS operations, or operate in swarms. Combining affordability, survivability, long-range, high-subsonic speeds, maneuverability, and ability to carry flexible mission kit configurations and mix of lethal weapons from its internal bomb bay and wing stations, the XQ-58A provides unmatched operational flexibility at an affordable price for multiple Department of Defense customers.

“MUX TACAIR promises to increase the lethality and survivability of our current crewed platforms,” said Lt. Col. Bradley Buick, Cunningham Group Capabilities, Research, and Integration Officer. “These platforms are the future of air warfare.”

Steve Fendley, President of Kratos Unmanned Systems Division, said, “We're very excited about the mission capability demonstrated during the flight and the incredible effectiveness per cost that this enables; not to mention the elimination of risk to a human pilot, and elimination of risk to expensive manned platforms.  We're proud to be pioneering these technologies with our integrated autonomous aircraft systems that truly validate the DoD's goal of achieving effective, survivable, affordable mass.  We are humbled to support the vision and drive of our Marine’s customer who has charted the course for these critical 21st century capabilities and proud to be working as a collective team with Kratos high performance uncrewed jets, Northrop Grumman's leading technology EW systems, and the Marine Corps.”

About Kratos Defense & Security Solutions
Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ: KTOS) is a technology, products, system and software company addressing the defense, national security, and commercial markets. Kratos makes true internally funded research, development, capital and other investments, to rapidly develop, produce and field solutions that address our customers’ mission critical needs and requirements. At Kratos, affordability is a technology, and we seek to utilize proven, leading-edge approaches and technology, not unproven bleeding edge approaches or technology, with Kratos’ approach designed to reduce cost, schedule and risk, enabling us to be first to market with cost effective solutions. We believe that Kratos is known as an innovative disruptive change agent in the industry, a company that is an expert in designing products and systems up front for successful rapid, large quantity, low-cost future manufacturing which is a value-add competitive differentiator for our large traditional prime system integrator partners and also to our government and commercial customers. Kratos intends to pursue program and contract opportunities as the prime or lead contractor when we believe that our probability of win (PWin) is high, and any investment required by Kratos is within our capital resource comfort level. We intend to partner and team with a large, traditional system integrator when our assessment of PWin is greater or required investment is beyond Kratos’ comfort level. Kratos’ primary business areas include virtualized ground systems for satellites and space vehicles including software for command & control (C2) and telemetry, tracking and control (TT&C), jet powered unmanned aerial drone systems, hypersonic vehicles and rocket systems, propulsion systems for drones, missiles, loitering munitions, supersonic systems, space craft and launch systems, C5ISR and microwave electronic products for missile, radar, missile defense, space, satellite, counter UAS, directed energy, communication and other systems, and virtual & augmented reality training systems for the warfighter. For more information, visit

Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements in this press release may constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are made on the basis of the current beliefs, expectations and assumptions of the management of Kratos and are subject to significant risks and uncertainty. Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements. All such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and Kratos undertakes no obligation to update or revise these statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Although Kratos believes that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, these statements involve many risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from what may be expressed or implied in these forward-looking statements. For a further discussion of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward-looking statements, as well as risks relating to the business of Kratos in general, see the risk disclosures in the Annual Report on Form 10-K of Kratos for the year ended December 31, 2023, and in subsequent reports on Forms 10-Q and 8-K and other filings made with the SEC by Kratos.

Press Contact:
Yolanda White
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What did Kratos Defense & Security Solutions announce regarding KTOS?

Kratos Unmanned Systems Division demonstrated the XQ-58A's ability to fly with F-35 aircraft and deliver an integrated electronic attack capability during a live flight test event.

Where did the live flight test event for XQ-58A take place?

The live flight test event for XQ-58A took place at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida.

What program did the demonstration complete the first phase of?

The demonstration completed the first phase of the United States Marine Corps' Penetrating Affordable Autonomous Collaborative Killer – Portfolio (PAACK-P) program.

What contract modification was awarded to Kratos Defense & Security Solutions on December 4, 2023?

Kratos received a $22.9M 'Phase 2' contract modification for additional engineering development and flight test demonstrations.

What capabilities did the XQ-58A Valkyrie demonstrate during the flight test?

The XQ-58A demonstrated advanced electronic attack capabilities, including detecting, identifying, and geolocating multiple targets of interest, transmitting target track coordinates, and presenting non-kinetic electronic attack effects.

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About KTOS

kratos defense & security solutions, inc. (nasdaq:ktos) is a specialized national security technology business providing mission critical products, services and solutions for united states national security priorities. kratos’ core capabilities are sophisticated engineering, manufacturing and system integration offerings for national security platforms and programs. areas of expertise include c5isr, satellite communication systems, electronic warfare, unmanned systems, missile defense, cyber warfare, cybersecurity, information assurance and critical infrastructure security. kratos has primarily an engineering and technically-oriented work force of approximately 3,900.