Heron 1 UAV fully op­er­a­tional

SP's MAI - - UNMANNED UPDATES -

The Sin­ga­pore Min­is­ter for De­fence Dr Ng Eng Hen of­fi­ci­ated at a cer­e­mony to mark the achieve­ment of full op­er­a­tional ca­pa­bil­ity (FOC) sta­tus by the Repub­lic of Sin­ga­pore Air Force’s (RSAF) Heron 1 un­manned aerial ve­hi­cle (UAV) at Mu­rai Camp re­cently.

Dr Ng high­lighted the sig­nif­i­cance of this mile­stone to the over­all en­hance­ment of the Sin­ga­pore Armed Force’s (SAF) ca­pa­bil­i­ties. He said, “The FOC of Heron 1 brings the RSAF’s un­manned aerial ca­pa­bil­i­ties to the level of ad­vanced mil­i­taries glob­ally… The Heron 1 is among the most ad­vanced UAV sys­tems in its class, able to per­form sev­eral mis­sions si­mul­ta­ne­ously as with a suite of state-of-the-art sen­sors and en­hanced range…. Apart from these con­ven­tional op­er­a­tions, it can also be de­ployed against ter­ror­ist threats, be­cause its per­sis­tence en­ables it to cover a wide area of sur­veil­lance.”

Dr Ng also lauded the team ef­fort by the Air Im­agery In­tel­li­gence Ex­perts, the En­gi­neers, De­fence Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy Agency (DSTA) sci­en­tists and en­gi­neers in con­tribut­ing to the Heron 1’s FOC, not­ing that the leap in ca­pa­bil­ity from the Searcher to the Heron 1 is “a sig­nif­i­cant achieve­ment for all of us, and [for] which we have [had to] over­come many chal­lenges along the way”.

Fea­tur­ing state-of-the-art avion­ics, de­tec­tion ca­pa­bil­i­ties and com­mu­ni­ca­tions sys­tems, as well as fully au­to­matic take-off and land­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties and longer flight en­durance, the Heron 1 UAV pro­vides the SAF with bet­ter bat­tle­field sit­u­a­tional aware­ness and en­hanced mission ef­fec­tive­ness. Equipped with a multi-mission sen­sor, it is able to re­spond to a wide range of mis­sions, in­clud­ing non-con­ven­tional threats.

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