Switchblade UAS

Switchblade submarine launch - U.S. Navy Photo.


The Switchblade Lethal Aerial Munition (LAM) is an expendable UAV produced by AeroVironment.  Switchblade can be equipped with a three pound warhead to attack soft targets. The battery-powered, tandem wing, precision guided munition has a limited-duration (15 minute) loiter capability and is flown with AeroVironment’s common control station.

Switchblade was test-launched from a U.S. Navy submarine during Trident Warrior 2010 using a submerged launch vehicle (SLV), allowing the UAV to be deployed via the submarine's trash-disposal unit at periscope depth.  This capability was a component of Raytheon's Submarine Over-The-Horizon Organic Capabilities (SOTHOC) program.

In January 2013, the Navy successfully demonstrated multiple intercepts against remote-controlled maneuvering high-speed surface targets simulating fast attack craft during an experiment with unarmed Switchblades launched from the Navy’s Self-Defense Test Ship (SDTS) in Southern California waters. Switchblade has also been employed in combat in Afghanistan by the U.S. Marine Corps.

In April 2015, an inert Switchblade was test-launched from a Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey in Twentynine Palms, California.

AeroVironment Switchblade promotional video.

Switchblade Data Sheet