Israeli company to develop new attack drone for U.S. military

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Jan. 19 (UPI) — State-owned Israel Aerospace Industries won a U.S. Department of Defense contract to develop and deliver a new attack drone weapon described by the firm as a hybrid electro-optically guided missile.

The attack drone is called Point Blank. It can be carried in a soldier’s backpack and it can be launched by a single soldier, landing back in the soldier’s hand, according to IAI.

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IAI said in a news release that Point Blank can attack a variety of targets in real time with “great precision and high lethality, without the need for support.”

IAI released a video demonstrating the drone in action.

IAI Executive Vice President Guy Bar said in a statement: “Point Blank joins Israel Aerospace Industries’ family of missiles, to provide ground-based tactical forces with more precise capabilities to undertake offensive operations especially against short-lived targets. … IAI continues to develop and improve a wide range of offensive systems which provide precision operational solutions, and stands firmly to support our U.S. customers.”

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The IAI statement said the company was “competitively awarded a multimillion-dollar contract for the attack drone by the Irregular Warfare Technical Support Directorate of the U.S. Department of Defense to rapidly develop and deliver ‘ROC-X’ a version of the Point Blank system that meets specific U.S. requirements for the purpose of increasing the organic precision strike lethality and survivability of small tactical teams.”

Point Blank weighs about 15 pounds and is about 3 feet long. It can fly above 1,500 feet at a maximum speed of 178 mph. the drone can hover over a target while gathering surveillance information in real time, according to IAI.