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Australian Army to Finally Introduce ‘Owl’ Electric-Powered Suicide Drone

The Australian Army will finally induct a new, electric-powered kamikaze drone that has been in development for more than two years.

Called the “Owl,” the loitering munition can travel up to 200 kilometers (124 miles) and stay in the air for 30 minutes without recharging.

It also carries seven kilograms (15 pounds) of anti-armor and fragmentation warheads, which are suited for precision targeting of stationary or moving targets.

The Owl is currently being trialed by a special operations unit within the Australian Defence Force.

It will be introduced before the end of this year, according to a report by ABC News.

Funding Issue

The Owl was developed by Kardinya-based firm Innovaero in collaboration with Boeing subsidiary Insitu Pacific.

Government documents show more than 5.3 million Australian dollars ($3.5 million) have been allotted for the project since May 2022.

But defense industry insiders revealed that funding has been problematic in some innovation programs, causing lengthy delays.

Although they did not specify which programs have been affected, they said these include “small, cheap, and immediate capabilities.”

“The services have so little funding that they can’t cover these small programs and meet their longer-term needs for ships and aircraft,” a source claimed. “There seems to have been a decision made that the priority is the big, expensive, and long term [projects].”

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