What is MQ 9 Reaper?

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What is MQ 9 Reaper? Blog Image


An MQ-9 Reaper drone belonging to the United States Air Force recently crashed into the Black Sea due to collision with a Russian Su-27 jet fighter.

About MQ 9 Reaper:

  • The MQ-9 Reaper, also known as Predator B, is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) capable of remotely controlled or autonomous flight operations.
  • It is developed by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI), primarily for the United States Air Force (USAF).
  • It is remotely operated by a two-person team consisting of a pilot and an aircrew member who operates sensors and guides weapons.
  • The US uses the MQ-9 Reaper for both surveillance and strikes.
  • Features:
    • It is 11 metres long with a wingspan of over 22 metres.
    • Reapers can be armed with air-to-ground Hellfire missiles as well as laser-guided bombs.
    • It carry as many as 16 Hellfire missiles, equivalent to the payload capacity of an Apache helicopter.
    • It can fly at an altitude of 50,000 ft (15 km) and can loiter over targets for for over 27 hours.
    • Top speed: 275 mph.


Q1: What are Hellfire missiles?

Hellfire is an air-to-ground, laser guided, subsonic missile with significant anti-tank capacity. It can also be used as an air-to-air weapon against helicopters or slow-moving fixed-wing aircraft.

Source: MQ-9 Reaper: All about the US drone that crashed into the Black Sea