Lithuania to Provide Armed Forces With 35 Small Drones
The Lithuanian Ministry of Defence has announced a procurement process to buy unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for its armed forces.
The future order includes two UAV models, including 26 “mini” and nine “small” systems.
According to market analysis, the variants should cost around 36 million euros ($36 million).
They will be utilized for target identification and tracking, field impact assessment, artillery fire monitoring, and system adjustments.
The acquisition aims to provide reconnaissance assets for Lithuanian forces that meet the Class 1 capability requirement (below 150 kilograms/331 pounds).
“Acquisition of these systems will significantly improve the Lithuanian military intelligence capabilities,” Lithuanian Minister of National Defence Arvydas Anušauskas said.
“The Lithuanian Armed Forces currently doesn’t have any tactical unmanned aircraft suitable for reconnaissance.”
The “mini” type weighs up to 20 kilograms (44 pounds), has a maximum range of 25 kilometers (16 miles), and can reach an altitude of one kilometer (0.6 miles).
The “small” type weighs more than 20 kilograms, and has a maximum range of 50 kilometers (31 miles) and an altitude of 1.5 kilometers (1 mile).
Switchblade UAV Procurement From US
Alongside the potential UAV purchase, the Lithuanian government plans a separate combat drone acquisition from the US to obtain AeroVironment Switchblade UAVs.
“The Ministry of National Defence and the Lithuanian Armed Forces attaches great importance to acquisition and integration of new reconnaissance and warfare instruments aiming to improve combat capabilities of the Lithuanian Armed Forces,” the ministry stated.