The BAE Systems Phoenix is an all weather, day or night, real time surveillance Unmanned Air Vehicle. It is a twin boom UAV with a surveillance pod, from which the imagery is data linked to a ground control station (GCS). The Phoenix is a fairly typical combat surveillance UAV, powered by a 20 kW (26 hp) piston engine, but is distinctive in that it is a "tractor" aircraft, with the propeller in the front. This tends to obstruct a sensor turret, and so the sensor payload, built around an infrared imager, is carried in a pod slung well under the fuselage. The Phoenix is recovered by parachute, landing on its back, with a crushable "hump" on the back taking up the impact. The Phoenix is mostly made of Kevlar and other plastics. For the British Army, Phoenix provides intelligence direct to artillery forces, to command level, or to a Phoenix troop command post. The principle method of communication from the GCS to artillery on the ground is via the Battlefield Artillery Targeting System (BATES). The UAV can be launched within an hour of reaching launch site. The final operational flight of the Phoenix was conducted by in May 2006.
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Manufacture Range: 1986 - 1999
Platform Type: Fixed Wing, Unmanned
Initial Maker: BAE Systems
Current Final Maker: BAE Systems