Kratos Defense & Security Solutions has reached a partnership agreement with North American firm Wave Engine to help the latter in the development of the Versatile Air-Launched Platform (VALP).

The low-cost platform is intended to showcase the use of affordable and high-performance technologies for potential aerial systems in the future.

It will use Wave Engine’s proprietary engine technology to reduce lead times for capabilities that are required to challenge near-peer competitors.

Wave Engine North American CEO Daanish Maqbool said: “A vehicle like the VALP demands innovative design philosophies, and we are pleased to have a dynamic industry-leading partner in this effort.

“We look forward to working with Kratos to develop the VALP and lay the technical foundations for the next generation of high-performance aerial vehicles.”

Kratos Unmanned Systems Division is a provider of high performance unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for threat representative target missions.

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The partnership comes after Wave Engine won a contract last month from the US Air Force (USAF) Armament Directorate to advance its VALP product and demonstration.

As part of this, Kratos will manage the airframe’s aerodynamic and structural design and provide support in systems engineering.

Kratos Unmanned Systems Division president Steve Fendley said: “Being at the forefront of high-performance unmanned systems, Kratos continuously pursues technologies that can transform the paradigms of their cost-per-performance.

“We look forward to working with Wave Engine Corp to advance and help bring this state-of-the-art, novel platform and propulsion technology to market.”