Haifa, Israel: Elbit Systems designed and built Hermes 450 has become the first UAV in Israel to receive a certification by civil aviation authorities. The certification also makes Elbit the first Israeli company to receive all applicable civil aviation certification approvals for UAVs.
Because of a lack of civil standardization for UAVs in Israel, as elsewhere in the world, a need was felt to develop relevant legislation for the purpose. A special committee was established to test the UAV, its mode of operation as well as its manufacturer. Elbit Systems successfully met all the requirements.
The Hermes 450 is a major component of Israel's overall security systems and operations and also the primary UAV system of the Israeli Defence Force (IDF). A versatile, long-endurance system, the Hermes is equipped with Elbit Systems' CoMPASS EO/IR/LD gimbaled electro-optical payload. It can also adapt itself to a wide range of payloads, including SAR/GMTI radar and dual payload configurations.
A unique feature of the Hermes 450 is the fact that it executes its diverse missions in a highly autonomous manner. It is controlled by the Hermes Universal Ground Control System (UGCS), which facilitates highly automated mission operation and control of the air vehicle, as well as management of the EO/IR/Laser payload.
The UAV is also equipped with sophisticated communication systems that transmit imagery to ground stations in real time.
The Hermes 450 is recognized as the leading long endurance tactical UAV in its class. It has flown in operations conducted by the US armed forces and has also been selected as part of UK's Watchkeeper programme.
According to Elbit, the Hermes 450 has already accumulated over 65,000 flight hours.