DAC approves procurement of armed UAV MQ-9 Predator drones from US
India’s defence ministry on 15th June approved the acquisition of 31 MQ-9B armed drones from the US.
An overview of the news
The Defense Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved the purchase of armed Predator Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) at a cost of over $3 billion.
The UAVs will be procured from General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI), a United States-based aeronautical company.
What are Predator Drones?
The Predator UAV, produced by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. (GA-ASI), is commonly referred to as the MQ-9.
The MQ-9 has an impressive endurance, capable of flying for over 27 hours without refueling.
It can reach speeds of up to 240 KTAS (Knots True Airspeed).
The UAV is designed to operate at high altitudes, with a maximum operating ceiling of 50,000 feet.
It possesses a substantial payload capacity, allowing it to carry up to 3,850 pounds (1,746 kilograms) of equipment, sensors, or other mission-specific payloads.
Additionally, the MQ-9 has the capability to carry external stores, such as weapons or additional fuel, with a maximum weight of 3,000 pounds (1,361 kilograms).
Benefits of the MQ-9 UAV
The MQ-9 UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) exhibits an increased payload capacity and horsepower in comparison to its predecessor, the MQ-1 Predator.
It offers extended endurance, persistent surveillance, and the ability to carry out strikes, providing valuable capabilities for military operations.
The MQ-9 UAV has a maritime variant known as the Sea Guardian.
The Sea Guardian variant of the MQ-9 UAV possesses an impressive endurance capability of over 30 hours, making it suitable for maritime surveillance and other related missions.
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