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HESA Shahed 129 (Eye-Witness)

Medium-Altitude, Long-Endurance (MALE) Reconnaissance / Light Attack Drone

HESA Shahed 129 (Eye-Witness)

Medium-Altitude, Long-Endurance (MALE) Reconnaissance / Light Attack Drone

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



The HESA Shahed 129 reconnaissance Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle was introduced by Iran during 2012 and is in operational service today.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: Iran
YEAR: 2012
STATUS: Active, In-Service
MANUFACTURER(S): Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industrial Company (HESA) / Shahed Aviation Industries Research Center - Iran
PRODUCTION: 100
OPERATORS: Iran; Syria
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the HESA Shahed 129 (Eye-Witness) model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 0
LENGTH: 19.69 feet (6 meters)
WIDTH: 34.45 feet (10.5 meters)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 2,183 pounds (990 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Conventional engine driving three-bladed propeller in pusher configuration.
SPEED (MAX): 109 miles-per-hour (175 kilometers-per-hour; 94 knots)
RANGE: 186 miles (300 kilometers; 162 nautical miles)
CEILING: 17,995 feet (5,485 meters; 3.41 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 900 feet-per-minute (274 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



OPTIONAL:
4 x Air-to-surface missiles held underwing (two missiles per hardpoint).
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• Shahed 129 - Base Series Designation


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the HESA Shahed 129 (Eye-Witness) Medium-Altitude, Long-Endurance (MALE) Reconnaissance / Light Attack Drone.  Entry last updated on 11/18/2017. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
Iranian industry has been actively involved in development of drone aircraft for some time now - reengineering foreign types as well as evolving all-new indigenous designs with mixed levels of success. The HESA Shahed 129 series is a dual-role platform capable of reconnaissance work and attack. It was developed by the Shahed Aviation Industries Research Center of Iran with production handled by HESA. It appeared during September 2012, remains in active production and may have been procured by the Syrian government for its long-running civil war campaign begun in 2011. The Shahed 129 was debuted in mid-2012.

Externally, the Shahed 129 seems to mimic the form of foreign types like the Israeli Hermes 450 and British Watchkeeper UAVs and can be assumed to offer similar over-battlefield capabilities. A tubular fuselage is used to house the engine, fuel stores, avionics and reconnaissance-minded mission payload. A "blister" assembly housing the primary optics fit is set under the aircraft, aft of the nose section, offering unobstructed 360-degree views. The wings are shoulder-mounted along the fuselage sides and of a straight design with each supporting a single hardpoint. The hardpoints hold a twin-rail launcher to carry up to two Sadid-1 missiles each - giving the Shahed 129 a four-shot capability. The undercarriage is wheeled though fixed in place during flight (as in the American Predator). The tail is made up of two outward-canted vertical fins and the engine drives a three-bladed unit in a "pusher" configuration at rear. The air scoop is noted under the tail.




In practice, the Shahed 129 relies on a Ground Control Station (GCS) for direct-control flying but can also take on pre-set waypoint travel through autonomous flight. Range is limited by the communications technology in play but enough to provide a useful patrolling capability for the Iranian Army and Navy services. Its dual-role (reconnaissance and attack) design allows for active patrolling of a given area and direct- attack capability from a single platform. Missile attacks can focus on land-based targets (such as vehicles and fortifications) as well as sea-borne ones like enemy patrol ships - the latter crucial for maintaining control over Persian Gulf water routes. These traits are all very conventional for a UAV/UCAV of this class.




MEDIA









Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

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Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 120mph
Lo: 60mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (109mph).

    Graph average of 90 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
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  SYD
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  NYC
Graph showcases the HESA Shahed 129's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
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Pie graph section
Pie graph section
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Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
100
100

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue