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June 07, 2004

Predator UAV


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The Predator is a similar UAV to the Global Hawk.

It relies upon a human controller and long runways.

It is 27 feet in length and costs around $4.5 million (US) to manufacture. It is a mid-wing monoplane with a slim fuselage that houses the payload and fuel, a high aspect ratio wing, and inverted-V tails. A four-cylinder Rotax engine that requires 100-octane aviation gas powers the air vehicle.

It has a Cruise speed around 84 mph (70 knots) and a range of up to 400 nautical miles (454 miles) and 16 hours. It's ceiling is 25,000 feet.

predator-00000005-s.jpgThe Predator is officially a "Joint Forces Air Commander-owned theater asset for reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition."

Predators were first used by the US in 1995 in Bosnia. They were used far more extensively in the USA's assault against and occupation of Afghanistan in October 2001.

Their cameras are reported as being able to read a 3 to 6-inch letter from 10,000 feet.

A Predator was used in the assassination of Qaed Salim Sinan al-Harethi (alleged member of Al Qaeda) and 5 others on 3 November 2002. On this occasion the Predator was armed with a Hellfire missile and controlled at CIA headquarters in Langley.

Predator-UAV_nh_100201.jpgSimilarly armed Predators have been used on a number of other occasions including in Afghanistan to kill Mohammed Atef, al Qaeda's chief of operations.

Predators were not used in the March 2003 attack on Iraq due to many of them (up to 12%) having crashed in Afghanistan in bad weather conditions.

For more information on the Predator check out:
- RQ-1 Predator MAE UAV
- PREDATOR UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE (UAV)
- ABC News - Predator
- Predator Proves its worth
- Predator Photovault
- 100th Predator Produced
- How the Predator UAV Works
- The Predator UAV - The Ultimate Radio Control Aircraft
- Predator UAV
- RQ-1 Predator UAV

Posted by Darren at June 7, 2004 10:41 PM | More from Predator , UAV Information |