The Israeli military unveiled a new advanced fixed wing vertical takeoff UAV aircraft to improve surveillance on the battle field. The Israel Aerospace Industries Panther is a tilt-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) produced by Israel Aircraft Industries in Israel.
The Panther employs a tilt-rotor propulsion system patented by IAI and designed for tactical use, allowing runway-free takeoffs and landings on unprepared locations. It features three "ultra-quiet" electric motors, two of which are tilt-rotor and one providing additional lift for hovering, takeoff and landing. An automatic flight-control system controls the transition between the rotors' various positions.
Weighing roughly 65 kilograms (143 lb) the Panther has an operational radius of over 60 kilometres (37 mi) and can loiter for approximately six hours at an altitude of 10,000 feet (3,000 m). Its payload is IAI's Mini-POP electro-optical/infrared sensor, a stabilised camera with a laser rangefinder, pointer or laser designator.
The Panther is controlled from a two-man control station, one to control the aircraft and oversee tactical missions, and the other to act as the station manager. The two use identical consoles, while takeoff and landings are handled automatically.
A smaller version of the Panther, the Mini-Panther, is also available. Weighing 12 kg and capable of loitering for about two hours, it is controlled from a command and control center carried in backpacks by two operators.
Prototypes of the Panther have carried out successful flight tests and it is expected to be operational in 2011.[dated info] The Panther was unveiled on October 5, 2010, at the Israeli land forces conference at Latrun and will be on display at the Association of the US Army’s (AUSA) 2010 Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington DC. IAI revealed that the Panther is being evaluated by foreign special forces.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF; Hebrew: צְבָא הַהֲגָנָה לְיִשְׂרָאֵל About this sound Tzva Hahagana LeYisra'el (help·info), lit. "The Army of Defense for Israel", commonly known in Israel by the Hebrew acronym Tzahal (צה״ל), are the military forces of the State of Israel. They consist of the ground forces, air force, and navy. The IDF is headed by its Chief of General Staff, the Ramatkal, subordinate to the Defense Minister of Israel; Lieutenant general (Rav Aluf) Gadi Eizenkot has served as Chief of Staff since 2015.
An order from Defense Minister David Ben-Gurion on 26 May 1948 officially set up the Israel Defense Forces as a conscript army formed out of the paramilitary group Haganah, incorporating the militant groups Irgun and Lehi. The IDF served as Israel's armed forces in all the country's major military operations—including the 1948 War of Independence, 1951–1956 Retribution operations, 1956 Sinai War, 1964–1967 War over Water, 1967 Six-Day War, 1967–1970 War of Attrition, 1968 Battle of Karameh, 1973 Operation Spring of Youth, 1973 Yom Kippur War, 1976 Operation Entebbe, 1978 Operation Litani, 1982 Lebanon War, 1982–2000 South Lebanon conflict, 1987–1993 First Intifada, 2000–2005 Second Intifada, 2002 Operation Defensive Shield, 2006 Lebanon War, 2008–2009 Operation Cast Lead, 2012 Operation Pillar of Defense, and 2014 Operation Protective Edge. The number of wars and border conflicts in which the IDF has been involved in its short history makes it one of the most battle-trained armed forces in the world. While originally the IDF operated on three fronts—against Lebanon and Syria in the north, Jordan and Iraq in the east, and Egypt in the south—after the 1979 Egyptian–Israeli Peace Treaty, it has concentrated its activities in southern Lebanon and the Palestinian Territories, including the First and the Second Intifada.
The Israel Defense Forces differs from most armed forces in the world in many ways. Differences include the mandatory conscription of women and its structure, which emphasizes close relations between the army, navy, and air force. Since its founding, the IDF has been specifically designed to match Israel's unique security situation. The IDF is one of Israeli society's most prominent institutions, influencing the country's economy, culture and political scene. In 1965, the Israel Defense Forces was awarded the Israel Prize for its contribution to education. The IDF uses several technologies developed in Israel, many of them made specifically to match the IDF's needs, such as the Merkava main battle tank, Achzarit armoured personnel carrier, high tech weapons systems, the Iron Dome missile defense system, Trophy active protection system for vehicles, and the Galil and Tavor assault rifles. The Uzi submachine gun was invented in Israel and used by the IDF until December 2003, ending a service that began in 1954. Following 1967,