The Israeli Ministry of Defense has announced the start of test flights for its “most advanced” surveillance aircraft, the Oron.
The announcement comes after Israeli Aerospace Industries (IAI) completed the integration of new, state-of-the-art intelligence systems into the reconnaissance plane after two years.
The trials are expected to assess the Oron’s ability to accurately track multiple targets over vast distances and challenging weather conditions.
The test flight will be supervised by IAI, the ministry’s Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D), and the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF).
The IMoD's @Mafat_IL & @ILAerospaceIAI have fully implemented the ORON aircraft's intelligence systems, achieving an important milestone as it proceeds towards final delivery to the IDF. ORON, the world's most advanced ISR aircraft, will now advance to the joint test flight phase pic.twitter.com/HqcTOByupV
— Ministry of Defense (@Israel_MOD) August 27, 2023
About the Oron
In 2021, the IDF first received the Oron to support its future intelligence-gathering and target identification missions.
The plane is a Gulfstream G550 Aerospace aircraft outfitted with cutting-edge sensors, cameras, and command, control, communications, computer, and intelligence (C4I) systems.
According to the ministry, the plane is the product of years of research, utilizing knowledge and expertise from local and international partners.
It is designed to help the air force counter future threats across various fronts, thanks to its maximum altitude of 50,000 feet (15,240 meters) and flight range of 1,000 kilometers (623 miles).
The ministry also stated that the spy plane boasts a real-time monitoring capability that is more advanced than unmanned aerial vehicles.
“Oron is a joint multi-domain, multi-sensor solution which will provide the IDF with game-changing capabilities to counter threats far and near,” DDR&D official Lt. Col. Yoed said.