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SINGAPORE: IAI reveals new family of loitering munitions

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has introduced a new series of new loitering munitions, including a small grenade-carrying quadrotor designed for urban operations.

The Rotem L can carry an 1kg (2.2lb) warhead which consists of two grenades that cause the unmanned vehicle to explode on contact. The warhead can be swapped for a surveillance payload.

Up to three systems can be carried by infantrymen, and it has a beyond-line-of-sight 5nm (10km) communications range and 30min endurance. The Rotem L also contains an acoustic sensor for increased detection.

Loitering munitions are typically fixed-wing, fast-flying systems, so the rotary-wing configuration represents a novel design approach.

IAI has also unveiled the Harpy NG, which combines the anti-radiation seeker from the Harpy into the chassis of the Harop, increasing range and endurance.

It covers a wider RF spectrum, increasing from 2-18GHz to 0.8-18GHz, enabling it to home in on more radar types.

With the the Harpy NG and Harop typically operated by air forces, IAI has also introduced the new all-electric, canister-launched Green Dragon loitering munition for operation by land forces.

“This bird is an extension of the same philosophy but for the army and special forces,” says Yoram Shimoni, group director of marketing at IAI’s systems, missiles and space division. “It is significantly scaled down, but the concept is the same.”

Green Dragon has a 3kg warhead and a communications range of up to 21nm (40km), It is designed to be a cheaper and more easily operated munition. Up to 16 of the weapons can be carried on-board a typical infantry Humvee vehicle.

“It is being evaluated by several customers,” Shimoni says. “We hope to have the customer very soon.”

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