The nation of Pakistan has embraced the role of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) over the battlefield and this is proven by adoptions into service of such products as the GIDS "Shahpar". The system is intended for the unarmed reconnaissance role in the medium-altitude range and sports some built-in autonomy for various critical actions such as landings and take-offs. Mission payloads revolve around various camera and sensor fits for both day and night time operations. "GIDS" is the acronym representing "Global Industrial Defence Solutions" of Rawalpindi, Pakistan.
The GIDS Shahpar entered formal service in 2012 with the Pakistan military (Air Force and Army) and it has also served the Saudi Air Force to an extent.
The Shahpar is arranged in a "canard pusher" configuration meaning a small set of wings (canards) are fitted ahead of the wing mainplanes (mounted aft) and the engine drives a propeller unit in "pusher" configuration at the rear of the fuselage. This allows the frontal section of the fuselage to be used for carrying the mission packages as well as fuel and powerplant. The wing mainplanes exhibit slight sweepback and are capped at their tips by vertical fins. This clears the rear section of the aircraft for the three-bladed propeller unit used for propulsion. The wheeled undercarriage is fixed under the aircraft during flight (non-retractable) and an optics blister (Zumr-I (EP) multi-sensor unit) is seen under the fuselage.
Overall length is 4.2 meters with a wingspan of 6.6 meters. Payload weights reach 50 kilograms with the vehicle's gross take-off weight being 480 kilograms. Performance-wise, the Shahpar can reach cruising speeds up to 150 kph up to an altitude of 17,000 feet. Range is out to 250 kilometers and limited by the data link. Power is from a single Rotax 912 series 4-cylinder, four-stroke, reduction-drive engine of 100 horsepower. This Austrian-originated powerplant powers many small and ultralight aircraft worldwide.
The Shahpar platform offers ground commanders real-time data delivery. Guidance and tracking is through a GPS-based system with optional manual control and autonomy built-in. Landing actions are also autonomous or manual and can rely on a drag chute for short runway operation.
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
✓Intelligence-Surveillance-Reconnaissance (ISR), Scout
Surveil ground targets / target areas to assess environmental threat levels, enemy strength, or enemy movement.
Aircraft inherently designed (or later developed) with an unmanned capability to cover a variety of over-battlefield roles.
13.8 ft (4.20 m)
21.7 ft (6.60 m)
838 lb (380 kg)
1,058 lb (480 kg)
+220 lb (+100 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the base GIDS Shahpar production variant)
1 x Rotax 912 engine developing 100 horsepower.
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