First HERON TP MALE UAV for Germany completes first successful flight in Israel

According to information released on the Jerusalem Post website on July 26, 2020, the first Heron MALE TP UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) has completed its first successful flight in Israel before the delivery to the German armed forces.

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First HERON TP MALE UAV for Germany completes first successful flight in Israel 925 001 HERON TP MALE UAV Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. (Picture source IAI)

In June 2018, Germany has signed a leasing agreement for the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) Heron TP medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). Under this contract, the Germany army will receive five MALE Heron TP able to conduct reconnaissance missions, but that can be also armed.

The Heron MALE (medium-altitude long-endurance) TP was modified according to requirements and the needs of the German Ministry of Defense.

The IAI Heron TP is a multi-role, advanced, long-range Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) for strategic missions. It is equipped with automatic taxi-takeoff and landing systems (ATOL), satellite communication (SATCOM) for extended range, fully redundant avionics, and more.

The Heron TP was designed as a multi-mission platform to address local and international customers' needs and to perform a variety of strategic missions, including intelligence gathering, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance, using various payloads, with a high level of reliability.

The Heron TP MALE unmanned aircraft system (UAV) has a length of 14 m and features an all-composite airframe with high-wing cantilever monoplane design. This UAV is able to carry 1,000 kg of payload including electro-optical targeting system, infrared cameras, and laser range finder.

The Heron TP MALE is powered by Pratt & Whitney PT6A-67A turboprop engine developing 1,200 hp with a maximum flying range of 1,000 km and a maximum altitude of 45,000 ft (13,700 m).