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The fifth article in the series on the Israeli UAV industry.

By Arie Egozi

Aeronautics, the third largest UAS manufacturer in Israel, has completed a restructuring program and continues its sales efforts.

The Israeli company sold its Orbiter-2 UAS to Vietnam to be used as an aerial forward observation unit for its artillery corps. Deliveries of the same unmanned aerial system to the Finnish armed forces has begun recently.

Aeronautics will supply its Orbiter-2B, which is an improved version. Among the improved features are a digital communication systems, better resistance to harsh environment conditions and take off without the use of GPS.

A company source said that the use of a UAS instead of a ground based forward observation officer allows “first round on target”. The source added that from 2000 feet the Orbiter-2 can give the artillery units the coordinates of a number of targets. The orbiter-2 has a 1 meter long fuselage and a 3 meters wing span. It has 3.5 hours endurance.

Another effort was to make the company’s Orbiter-3 UAS suitable for operation from ships and the company has recently completed a series of sea trials of its Orbiter-3 unmanned aerial system. The Orbiter-3 has an endurance of 7 hours and carries a 5.5 kg EO payload.

The need for UAS operated from the decks of navy ships is growing. In some cases the UAS are intended to replace helicopters but in others they add a capability that was not available in any other form.

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