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Air Platforms

Taiwan displays armed MALE UAV at IDEX

01 March 2017

Taiwan's National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST) used the IDEX 2017 show in Abu Dhabi to display a model of an armed version of a medium-altitude long endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (MALE UAV) it unveiled in 2015.

NCSIST showed the model carrying with what appear to be two ground-attack missiles similar in size to the Lockheed Martin AGM-114 Hellfire laser- or radar-guided battlefield missile.

A senior NCSIST official at IDEX refused to comment about the possibility of Taiwan developing an indigenous UAV-capable air-to-surface missile similar to the Hellfire, stating only that details about the armed version of the MALE UAV would be revealed at the Taipei Aerospace & Defense Technology Exhibition (TADTE) 2017.

Developed by the Aeronautical Systems Research Division (ASRD) of NCSIST, which is presently Taiwan's primary military research and development agency, the MALE UAV is close in size to the General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc (GA-ASI) MQ-9 Reaper UAV.

NCSIST's MALE UAV, which was unveiled at the TADTE 2015 show, has a 17-m wingspan, can fly for 24 h, reach an altitude of 25,000 ft, and has a range of over 1,000 km, according to NCSIST.

At the show NCSIST also revealed its compact size "UAV Electronic Warfare [EW] System" configured for its MALE UAV.

A brochure describes it as being a "wideband EW system" that "is capable of searching, detecting, identifying and jamming all types of airborne radars, surface radars, missile seekers and ground surveillance equipment simultaneously".

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Taiwan's NCSIST displayed at IDEX 2017 a model of an armed version of a MALE UAV it unveiled in 2015. (IHS Markit/Richard D Fisher Jr)Taiwan's NCSIST displayed at IDEX 2017 a model of an armed version of a MALE UAV it unveiled in 2015. (IHS Markit/Richard D Fisher Jr)



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