Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (Nasdaq: KTOS), a leading national security solutions provider, said on April 18, that its subsidiary, Kratos Unmanned Aerial Systems, Inc. is joining the Dynetics lead team on Phase III of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Gremlins program.

Kratos is a critical team member responsible for providing the Gremlin Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs) through both development and ultimate production, according to a news release.

Under the Phase III contract, Kratos will support air vehicle flight tests, recovery tests and system demonstration, as well as planning for potential future capabilities and ultimately the fielding of an operational system. The company will also lead fabrication, structural and subsystem testing, assembly, integration, and test of prototype Gremlin UAVs.

The goal of the Gremlins program is to demonstrate safe and reliable aerial launch and aerial recovery of multiple unmanned drone system aircraft, capable of employing and recovering diverse distributed payloads in volley quantities.

"We are proud to support Dynetics on the Gremlins program which has been a key element of our strategic focus to position Kratos as the world leader in low-cost, high performance jet powered Tactical Unmanned Aerial Systems,” said Steve Fendley, president of the Kratos Unmanned Systems Division.

"Kratos is a critical part of our Gremlins team,” said Mark Miller, Dynetics vice president for Missile and Aviation Systems. “The expertise and experience Kratos brings in rapid development of low-cost, re-usable, composite airframes combined with an innovative, agile, design team is exactly what this fast-paced program requires."

According to Dynetics, the Phase III contract is a 21-month, $38.6 million award. The entire program will last 43 months, totaling $64 million.

“We see this Phase III win and the upcoming demonstration as a critical step and prerequisite in progressing to that transition," Fendley said.