Poland has taken delivery of multi-mission, turboprop-powered MQ-9A Reaper drones for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), according to the country’s Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak.
“MQ-9A Reaper MALE (Medium Altitude Long Endurance) drones have been delivered to Poland, leased from the US as part of an urgent operational requirement,” the minister tweeted on Sunday.
He also noted that the new drones will be used by the Air Force, conducting reconnaissance, among other things, on Poland’s eastern border.
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Poland received the Reaper drones as part of a lease agreement, which has a net value of $70.6 million, to enhance the country’s ability to conduct sustained airborne ISR and support its defense forces.
MALE (Medium Altitude Long Endurance) MQ-9A Reaper class drones have been delivered to Poland 🇵🇱, leased from the USA 🇺🇸 as part of an urgent operational need. They will serve in the 🇵🇱 Air Force, conducting reconnaissance among other things. on our eastern border. pic.twitter.com/eWunUzxhmG
— Mariusz Blaszczak (@mblaszczak) February 12, 2023
Reaper is primarily used as an intelligence gathering tool. It has an endurance of over 27 hours, a speed of 240 KTAS and can operate up to 50,000 feet. It has a payload of 3,850 pounds (1,746 kilograms) which includes 3,000 pounds (1,361 kilograms) of external tanks. Provides long-duration, sustained surveillance capability with full-motion video and synthetic aperture radar/moving target indicator/naval radar.
An extremely reliable aircraft, the MQ-9A Block 5 is equipped with a fault-tolerant flight control system and triple-redundant avionics system architecture, according to the company. It is designed to meet and exceed manned aircraft reliability standards.