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News18 » Tech
2-min read

Netra AEW&C And Heron Unmanned Aerial Vehicles The Air Force Used For Strikes on Terrorist Camps in PoK

Airborne Early Warning and Control System Aircraft (AEW&C) Netra and Israeli Heron drone played key role during the pre-dawn air strike carried out by the IAF.

Md. Waquar Haider | News18.comwaquarhaider2

Updated:February 27, 2019, 1:29 PM IST
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Netra AEW&C, Heron Drones: Why Air Force Picked These Drones for Surgical Strikes 2.0 Deep Across LoC (image: YouTube)
Netra AEW&C, Heron Drones: Why Air Force Picked These Drones for Surgical Strikes 2.0 Deep Across LoC (image: YouTube)

The Indian Air Force in the early hours of this morning, carried out air strikes on Jaish-E-Mohammad terror camps across the Line Control, well within the Pakistani occupied Kashmir (PoK) using 12 Mirage 2000 fighter jets. The aerial strikes, the first of its kind, were executed 12 days after Jaish-e-Mohammed terror group carried out the dastardly Pulwama attack in Kashmir, on a CRPF convoy. Reports suggest that during this operation, Netra AEW&C and Heron drones kept an eye on possible retaliation by the Pakistan Air Force jets.

Indigenously developed by the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO), the Airborne Early Warning and Control System Aircraft (AEW&C) Netra and Israeli Heron drone are believed to have played key role during the pre-dawn air strike carried out by the Indian Air Force (IAF) fighter jets on Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. The IAF deployed its Netra AEW&C and Heron UAV- which are termed as ‘Eye in the Sky’ – to monitor the movement of Pakistan Air Force jets and anti-aircraft radars installed across the LoC.

The IAI Heron (Machatz-1) is a medium-altitude long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) developed by the Malat (UAV) division of Israel Aerospace Industries. It is capable of Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) operations of up to 52 hours' duration at up to 10.5 km (35,000 ft). The Heron navigates using an internal GPS navigation device, and either a pre-programmed flight profile (in which case the system is fully autonomous from takeoff to landing), manual override from a ground control station, or a combination of both. It can autonomously return to base and land in case of lost communication with the ground station. The system has fully automatic launch and recovery (ALR) and all-weather capabilities.

Airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) system is a multisensor developed by DRDO on a carrier jet which provides an airborne surveillance system in collaboration with CAB (Centre for Airborne Systems) for the Indian Air Force. It is the first native AEW system developed by DRDO and CAB. It was completely developed and built using the native technology platform, EMB-145. Mission system control (MSC) is the brain of the AEW&C system, as it incorporates all the data from sensors and other systems to control the whole system. It assesses threats using data received from the on-board sensors and other sources, and presents the Air Situation Picture (ASP).

Additionally, a Pakistani unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) was reportedly shot down near the International Border in Kutch district of Gujarat. Debris of the UAV was seen near Nanghatad village in Abdasa taluka of Kutch, they said. On hearing a loud sound around 6 am, villagers went to the spot and found the debris of the UAV, the sources said.

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