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South Africa Wants to Develop a ‘Wingman Drone’
November 21, 2019
Kratos XQ-58A Valkyrie Technology Demonstrator. Photo Source: Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (U.S. Air Force).

South Africa Wants to Develop a ‘Wingman Drone’

The South African government think-tank the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) wants to develop a drone that could work with South Africa's JAS-39C/D Gripens in air-to-air and air-to-ground missions.

A 'loyal wingman' drone is basically an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that flies with manned fighters in high-risk missions.

These UAVs can work as attack aircraft in high-risk areas, undertake stand-off electronic warfare jamming, and even serve as decoys to protect the manned aircraft from enemy missiles.

Right now, CSIR is only proposing the idea, but if the South African government agrees, it could start the process and eventually develop a wingman drone.

CSIR believes that South Africa is completely capable of developing a loyal wingman drone.

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