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Edge announces Emirati UAV orders

A still from a video released by Edge during the Dubai Airshow shows a Reach-S flying from the airport on Abu al-Abyad island. (Edge Group)

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Armed Forces have ordered both Reach-S unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and Garmoosha rotary UAVs, local defence company Edge announced during the Dubai Airshow on 16 November.

It said the Reach-S order covers the delivery of 100 UAVs without specifying the value of the contract, while the contract for an unspecified number of Garmoosha UAVs is worth AED239 million (USD65 million).

Tawazun Council, which manages procurement for the UAE Armed Forces, appeared to confirm the Garmoosha order in its contract announcements on day four of the Dubai Airshow, saying one worth AED239 million had been awarded to ADASI, Edge's unmanned systems subsidiary, for helicopters it did not identify. It made no apparent reference to a Reach-S order.

The Garmoosha is listed as having a maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of 550 kg with a 120 kg payload, making it more than twice as heavy as the Schiebel S-100 rotary UAV currently used by the UAE Armed Forces.

Unveiled as a product of Edge's Halcon guided weapons subsidiary at the previous Dubai Airshow in 2021, the Reach-S has an MTOW of 600 kg with a 120 kg payload, making it slightly lighter than the class-leading Bayraktar TB2 made by Turkish company Baykar.

During this year's show, Edge said the UAV is being developed by ADASI and Advanced Concepts, a new subsidiary announced in February.

β€œWe have successfully completed two flight tests and a weapon-release campaign for the Reach-S, and we are currently gearing up for a long-endurance flight test,” the Edge statement quoted Advanced Concepts senior vice-president Saeed al-Mansoori as saying.

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