Thursday, September 23, 2010

Israel Reveals Panther Tiltrotor UAV

Israel’s new Panther vertical takeoff and landing unmanned tiltrotor aircraft is one of the latest products emerging from the classified projects section of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI).The UAV was developed by IAI’s Malat division, which has been looking at new designs to fill some of the operational gaps between the company’s largest, longest-range Heron TP UAV — now in operation with the Israeli Air Force — and its smallest 0.5-kg. (1.1-lb.) Mosquito UAV with a 30-40 min. flight time.

The Panther’s wingspan can vary from 2-8 meters (4.5-17.5 ft.) depending on the required mission endurance and the number of motors used. The current six-meter version has two electric motors and fuel cells that provide a 60-km. range and a top speed of 70 kt. It can carry an 8-kg. payload at an altitude of 10,000 ft. for up to 6 hr. It has a two-man, ground-based flight crew and can be assembled and operated in the field.

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