The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has awarded Babcock a post-design support contract for the small boat aerial delivery system (SBADS).

The SBADS will deliver small rigid and inflatable-hulled boats safely to the ocean from military transport aircraft.

Equipped with a twin V-form flexible sheet, the SBADS will feature a new deceleration mechanism that can be adjusted to control deceleration rates on impact with the water and avoid damage to the payload on landing.

The modular design of the SBADS will enable handling of larger payloads including life rafts, medical equipment containers and boats over 12ft long with outboard motors.

The system is designed for aircraft such as Hercules and Airbus A400M that are equipped with the standard 108in cargo handling system.

The modules can also be fitted with floats to allow recovery and reuse during training exercises, and can be configured to sink during operations.