The unmanned aerial systems (UAS) industry continues to experience explosive growth in the defense sector, led by companies such as Israel Aerospace Systems. The company manufactures a full line of UAS types covering a variety of military, security and peacekeeping missions.
Its main product is the "orbiter", which has been widely recognized worldwide by operators from Azerbaijan and Finland to the United Kingdom and the United States.
The Orbiter 2 is a compact, highly portable "mini-drone" sold across industries including border surveillance, convoy support, special forces operations and artillery reconnaissance. It can be deployed on land and water (sea) and covers general patrol, territorial/law enforcement, target observation, target designation, local ship defense and general surveillance needs.
The aircraft has a wingspan of 3 meters and an MTOW close to 10.3 kg, while supporting mission payloads of up to 1.5 kg). Payload types include stabilized electro-optical (EO) camera arrays for daytime operations, FLIR setup for low light/night flight, dual day and night configuration (stabilized EO cameras) and high definition (HD) reception capability for terrain mapping and modeling .
Structurally, the aircraft's wingspan reaches 4 meters, the mission payload is increased to 5.5 kg, and the maximum take-off weight is 40 kg. It has a top speed of 70 knots and a range of up to 150 km via a data connection. Start with the catapult and resume with the net.
Orbiter 4 is marketed for several unique industries, including Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) enforcement, targeting and artillery detection, and incorporates many of the features proven by the Series 3 model. It features a swept main plane with a downward pointing tip and a front plane like the 3 Series UAS. More advanced avionics, ground control support and communications are integrated into this updated form for a wider range of tactical applications. The wingspan reaches 5.4 meters, the MTOW is 50 kg, and the mission payload is increased to 12 kg.
The data connection provides a line-of-sight range of up to 150 kilometers, and the vehicle's service ceiling is up to 18,000 feet. Up to 24 hours of flight time.
Longer range and payload capacity means more versatility for a variety of roles on the battlefield. A three-person team worked on the operation of this model.
The Orbiter 1K is designed as a multi-mission UAS with a secondary capability as a platform for expendable munitions with longer dwell times. It has the same fuselage and wing shape as previous Orbiter iterations (though this shape has upturned wingtips).
The aircraft can be used as a precision targeting munitions system and is equipped with a video-based tracker, a digital communications suite and a variable camera/explosive payload option. Launch is by catapult and rescue by airbag/parachute or net.
The Orbiter 1K is based on the original production model of the Orbiter 2.
The Orbiter is used by the Azerbaijani military and the country has established local manufacturing facilities to support it. Other armies using the vehicle are Finland, Ireland, Peru, Poland (including special forces), Serbia, South Africa and Spain.
The Israeli Marine Corps, the Mexican Federal Police, and the Royal Thai Air Force are all well-known operators of this type. The series also received scrutiny in the UK and US, with three units on order for the former.
- Ground Attack
- Electronic Warfare (EW)
- Reconnaissance (RECCE)
- Special Forces
9. 84 feet (3 m)
81 mph (130 km/h; 70 knots)
9,843 ft (3,000 m; 1.86 mi)
62 miles (100 km; 54 nmi)
No. Orbiter 2 payloads up to 1.5kg.
Orbiter - The name of the base series.
Orbiter 2 - Mini-UAS solution.
Orbiter 3 - Small Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (STUAV).
Orbiter 4 - Special mission variant.
Orbiter 1K "Kingfisher" - 2015 model; expendable ammunition model with a 4.4 lb explosive payload.