Israeli unmanned systems specialist Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has shared first features of the Heron MK II multi altitude long endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), a new member of the Heron family of systems.
IAI said the system would be displayed for the first time at the upcoming Singapore airshow.
The Heron MK II is an updated model of the Heron UAV, which is used by the Israeli Air Force and is operational with over 20 other organizations worldwide.
As a member of the Heron family, the Heron MK II benefits from the experience gained from 1,800,000 cumulative flight hours, and over 50 operational customers.
Fitted with a Rotax 915 iS engine, the Heron MK II can reach an altitude of 35,000 feet, a maximum speed of 140 knots and can remain in the air for 45 consecutive hours. Due to improved manufacturing technologies, the Heron MK II has a wider and stronger body structure, allowing for quick and easy maintenance without adding to its weight.
According to IAI, the Heron MK II enables new configurations, has long-range observation sensors and radars, and can carry a range of additional payloads such as: ELINT, COMINT, special and more.
The standout feature of the Heron MK II is its ability to perform standoff capability, gathering intelligence from tens of kilometers away without crossing borders, thanks to its ability to carry larger and improved sensors. In addition, the Heron MK II has an improved engine and avionics.
“We are proud to introduce another major development in IAI’s UAVs. The Heron MK II allows for considerable expansion of the operational package with an emphasis on standoff intelligence collection,” IAI executive vice president and general manager of the military aircraft group, Moshe Levy, said.