Major aerospace firms from Israel and South Korea are collaborating on a loitering munitions program that will maximize the effectiveness of strike missions against enemy air defenses.
Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) signed a memorandum of understanding with Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) to establish cooperation by conducting joint feasibility studies related to the project.
The agreement also seeks to develop new weapons systems capable of performing long-endurance reconnaissance missions and striking targets when necessary.
The memorandum was signed during the Seoul International Aerospace and Defense Exhibition (ADEX 2021) in Seoul earlier this month.
Developing Next-Gen UAV Technology
In March, the two defense companies signed an initial collaborative agreement to develop loitering munitions, with particular attention to the South Korean Army’s pursuit of manned-unmanned teaming.
Loitering munitions combine the capabilities of drones and missiles to search, identify, and destroy targets from long range. An upgraded class of such weapons systems has been developed to hit sensitive and moving targets.
KAI executive vice president Chang Heon-Han remarked that the Korean firm is dedicated to developing next-generation unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology for the military. He also said that the company would continue to develop solutions to meet various customer needs.
At present, IAI has several combat-proven loitering munitions, such as the HARPY NGW and HAROP loitering missiles.