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IMCMEX 2013This operational requirement is almost part of every negotiation of a client that wants to buy Israeli made UAS

The Israeli air force (IAF) is a major operator of unmanned air systems (UAS). Until recently there was a “man in the loop” mainly in the shape of an external pilot , in charge of takeoffs and landing of some of the systems.

The IAF is equipping all its Israel aerospace industries (IAI) Heron-1 (Shoval) with an automatic  takeoff and landing systems.

This will make the task of the external pilot redundant and he will control take offs and landings only in “Special” circumstances.

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The process has begun a few years ago and will be completed by year’s end.

The Heron – 1 UAS is used extensively by the IAF for a large variety of missions including maritime patrol.

The auto takeoff and landing system that was installed in the Heron-1 , is similar to the one installed in the Heron -TP (Eitan) the largest and  heaviest UAS in the IAF inventory.

experts say that  the automatic system in the Heron-1 will give the UAS  greater operational flexibility and will increase the operational safety.