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The IDF has exposed the activities of the Israeli Artillery Corps UAV Unit (Rochev Shamaim), which operates UAVs in various zones and directs the forces in real-time.

The unit’s 600 soldiers are divided into five-men teams. The soldiers carry the 60kg unmanned aerial vehicles on their backs, according to

The unit commander, Lt. Col. Reut Ratig Weiss, said the unit has recently acquired a new capability – precise fire direction and target marking. In addition, the acquisition of the Block 3 system has been advanced. The system enables longer endurance, larger flight range,  more diverse communications between the forces, more simple operation and higher resolution imaging, according to

The UAV, which is the IDF’s smallest aerial vehicle, is designed to execute observation missions and open routes for the forces and commanders during ground maneuvers in war as well as during routine security missions.

The new commando troop established recently for operations behind the borderlines will also be using the new UAVs for intelligence collection and observation in special ground missions on an enemy territory.

IDF Spokesperson presented various missions fulfilled by the unit, e.g. directing the Israeli security forces during an arrest in Jenin, including the screening of the route before the forces’ entrance and then supporting them until the arrest; and directing fire against artillery in Syria.

The unit commander said that during 2017, there were only 10 incidents of UAV falls out of some 7000 flight hours, a considerable decline in comparison to 2016. Most of the incidents were due to technical problems. She said there is no danger of information exposed regarding the UAVs that fall, because “the information is being erased so that whoever collects the aerial vehicle would not be able to extract any information”.