The upgraded MQ-1C Gray Eagle drone, often known as the “Gray Eagle,” is probably on its way to Ukraine soon.
The American MQ-1C Gray Eagle reconnaissance and attack drone will be delivered to the Ukrainian military in a modernised form, and equipment that might endanger Washington should it accidentally fall into enemy hands has been replaced. The American MQ-1C Gray Eagle reconnaissance and attack drone will be delivered to the Ukrainian military in an upgraded form, and equipment that would endanger Washington should it accidentally fall into enemy hands has been replaced. After speaking with a senior Pentagon source, CNN reported that the US had declined to give Ukraine the MQ-1C Gray Eagle UAV. The main justification given was that the US feared Russia would obtain the aircraft and its “secret technology,” endangering the US’s national security.
The Pentagon is currently working on a solution to this problem, which involves changing the drones so they can be transferred to Ukraine without being used as a means of transporting “secret technology.” The Pentagon is considering how to alter the drones to make it feasible for the loss and the sensitive technology to be less harmful, facilitating the delivery.
This information was also confirmed by the US Congress, which even stated that there are specific technical solutions to make drones “safe to deliver,” but that everything hinges on time and money, and that this is also a very time-consuming process. All things considered, developing a high-tech drone into anything useful takes a significant amount of time and money. The Pentagon is currently assessing the action’s value and potential outcomes. The US defence company General Atomics created the unmanned aerial vehicle known as the MQ-1C Gray Eagle in the 2000s. It has been in use since 2009. With a length of 8.53 metres, a wingspan of 17 metres, a height of 2.1 metres, and a maximum takeoff weight of 1,633 kilogrammes, this reconnaissance and attack drone is rather big.
The MQ-1C can travel at a top speed of 309 km/h thanks to its Thielert Centurion 1.7 turboprop engine, which has a 165 horsepower rating. More than 8,839 metres are the maximum height of this UAV. The MQ-1C is fitted with the AN/ZPY-1 STARLite radar, which, according to Northrop Grumman Defense Industry Corporation, can identify moving targets at a distance of up to 8 km, including ground-based people. AGM-114 Hellfire air-to-surface missiles, AIM-92 Stinger air-to-air missiles, or bombs like the GBU-44/B Viper Strike can all be carried by the MQ-1C depending on the combat mission. It is equipped with four under-wing pylons.
Since the beginning of a special military operation by Russia on February 24, Ukraine has used a variety of shorter-range UAVs against the Russian Army, including the Bayraktar-TB2 and the RQ-20 Puma AE produced by Turkey and the US company AeroVironment.
The MQ-1C Gray Eagle outperforms the Bayraktar-TB2 in terms of being able to use more sophisticated ammunition, operating at higher altitudes, and having a much longer range. The Russian Army could run into a lot of difficulties if the MQ-1C Gray Eagle shows up on the Ukrainian battlefield.