Kratos Defense & Security Solutions’ Unmanned Systems Division has been awarded a $23m contract for high-performance jet drones.

The contract with an undisclosed customer will cover a production run of one of the company’s target drone systems.

Kratos said that its target systems have the ability to perform as high-fidelity enemy threat surrogates, simulating the characteristics of aircraft and missiles.

The drone systems are used to support weapons testing, weapons development, and training.

Kratos Unmanned Systems Division president Steve Fendley, said: “We have on-contract high-performance drone production operations active in multiple states and multiple sites to achieve the current quantity demand which is only forecasted to continue increasing in the coming years.

“These are exciting times for the company and our individual employees as we see our family of fielded unmanned aircraft products grow as we transition more systems to production while simultaneously and continuously establishing and evolving new development systems.”

The company manufactures a range of systems, including unmanned aerial drone and target systems, unmanned aerial, ground and sea platforms, command, control, avionics control, and termination systems.

Kratos portfolio of aerial target systems includes the BQM-167A, BQM-167i, BQM-177A, BQM-177i, and MQM-178.

The BQM-167A air force subscale aerial target (AFSAT) is in service with the US Air Force (USAF) to provide pilots with end-to-end weapons-release training. Designed for the US Navy, the BQM-177A is a next-generation subsonic aerial target (SSAT).

In June, Kratos won a $31.8m contract to provide 35 additional AFSAT production target aircraft to the USAF.