Guardian drones, which India to buy from US, can fly at 50,000 feet: 10 things about this predatory machine

The US and India look forward to working together on advanced defence equipment and technology at a level commensurate with that of America's closest allies and partners, said a joint statement.

Guardian drones, which India to buy from US, can fly at 50,000 feet: 10 things about this predatory machine
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New Delhi: The United States has cleared the sale of Guardian drones to India after the Modi-Trump meeting in Washington on last Monday, their first bilateral since the US president took office last year.

Here are top facts about this predatory machine:

1/ The Predatory Guardian drones became operational on 1 May 2007.

2/ The drone was first inducted as part of the US Navy's Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS) programme.

3/ India to purchase 22 naval variants of the unarmed surveillance aircraft. The Indian version of the drone is only for reconnaissance missions.

4/ Abraham Karem is the designer of the drone while General Atomics is the company that produces it.

5/ The Guardian drone can remain in the air for over 27 hours and it can reach a maximum altitude of 50000 feet.

6/ The drone's maximum speed limit is 240 KTAS (True airspeed, in knots).

7/ Its maximum payload carrying capacity is 1,746 kg.

8/ India will be the first country to purchase such a drone by a non-NATO member.

9/ Guardian drones can hunt targets and scan terrain by using multiple sensors that are equipped with thermographic cameras.

10/ The onboard camera is so powerful that it can read a license plate from two miles (3.2 km) away.