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Aevex Phoenix Ghost


Loitering Munition / Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS)


United States | 2022



"The Aevex Phoenix Ghost is a new player in the loitering munitions market - the U.S. originated product being sent to Ukraine to bolster its defensive capabilities."



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 04/22/2022 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
The expendable loitering munition is now a common aerial component of modern fighting forces as these Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UASs) offer considerable attack value at the tactical level with relatively little risk. These UASs are essentially one-way 'kamikaze' type over-battlefield solutions designed to seek out, track, and engage enemy targets to neutralize their value. Such solutions have been in development and operational use for some time and actively deployed by global powers such as the United States, Israel, and - more recently - Ukraine in its fight against neighboring Russia.

The United States Air Force (USAF) is said to have headed a new mystery project concerning a loitering munition made specifically for ally Ukraine under the name of "Phoenix Ghost" - a tactical level UAS said to be in-the-works even before the Russian invasion of February 2022. The aircraft are manufactured by relative newcomer Aevex Aerospace (established in 2017) and government officials have announced that at least 121 of these low-cost unmanned attackers will be part of a comprehensive materials package sent to the Ukrainians to support their ongoing defense.

The UAS gives the country a notable advantage over the battlefield against unsuspecting ground targets, operating quietly and providing real-time information to its ground operator. Potential targets include up to medium-armored vehicles, critical Command and Control (C2) establishments, artillery positions, and troop encampments.

While few official details of the Phoenix Ghost exist as of this writing (April 2022), it is said to be comparable in functionality to the AeroVironment "Switchblade" loitering munition (detailed elsewhere on this site). The Switchblade exists as a highly-portable (at just 4lb) infantry-level, tube-launched attack-minded expendable drone driven by a twin-bladed propeller in "pusher" configuration. It sports spring-loaded wings which come into play after launch. All told, the all-in-one system provides front-line operators yet another tool in their arsenal.

The Phoenix Ghost is detailed with a Vertical Take-Off (VTO) capability, this proving a vital quality as it allows for its launching from nearly anywhere infantrymen find themselves. Its mission endurance window is said to be around six hours, well more than that of the competing Switchblade's 40-minute loitering time - giving this UAS excellent endurance over contested battlespaces as its searches / tracks for ground targets before committing its lethal payload against it (the entire unit is used up in the attack). Furthermore, the integrated optics set allows for day-night operation, the latter aided by an an in-built InfraRed (IR) capability.

In the ongoing conflict thus far, the Ukrainians have shown a mastery of the modern battlefield with a willingness to try anything and everything as it stands up to the second most powerful military in the world (GlobalFirepower.com, 2022). The growing focus on loitering munitions will only add to the real-time evolution of a battlespace as we know it today, a battlespace once dominated by air superiority, Electronic Warfare (EW), heavily-armored MBTs, and reliance on ranged artillery.

Some qualities appearing in the specifications section below are estimates on the part of the author.

Content ©MilitaryFactory.com; No Reproduction Permitted.

April 2022 - The U.S. has announced that it will make 121 Phoenix Ghost loitering munitions part of its next materials aid package to Ukraine.

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Aevex Phoenix Ghost Loitering Munition / Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS).
1 x Motor of unknown type, make, and model for propulsion.
Propulsion
Structure
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Aevex Phoenix Ghost Loitering Munition / Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS).
0
(UNMANNED)
Crew
Armament
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Aevex Phoenix Ghost Loitering Munition / Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) .
Impact detonation, expendable payload.
Variants
Notable series variants as part of the Aevex Phoenix Ghost family line.
Phoenix Ghost - Base Series Name.
Operators
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Aevex Phoenix Ghost. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 500 Units

Contractor(s): Aevex Aerospace - USA
National flag of Ukraine

[ Ukraine (announced) ]
Era Crossover
Pie graph section
Showcasing Aircraft Era Crossover (if any)
Production Comparison
500
36183
44000
Entry compared against Ilyushin IL-2 (military) and Cessna 172 (civilian) total production.
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Mission Roles
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GROUND ATTACK
CLOSE-AIR SUPPORT
RECONNAISSANCE
SPECIAL FORCES
UNMANNED
Recognition
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Similar
Developments of similar form-and-function, or related, to the Aevex Phoenix Ghost Loitering Munition / Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS).
Going Further...
The Aevex Phoenix Ghost Loitering Munition / Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) appears in the following collections:
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