Threatened by Chinese invasion, Taiwan buys SeaGuardian MQ-9B Drone, What are its Capabilities?

Threatened by Chinese invasion, Taiwan buys SeaGuardian MQ-9B Drone, What are its Capabilities
The SeaGuardian MQ-9B Drone

Taipei - Continues to heat up, Taiwan is now increasingly wary of the threat posed by China. Although indirectly, China, which has always deployed weapons near its sovereignty, has made Taiwan feel even more threatened. With China's increasing military assertiveness in the region, Taiwan has begun to strengthen its military capabilities.

This also relates to support from the United States. The self-governing island hopes to strengthen its armed forces by acquiring two of America's most powerful weapons. These include the MQ-9B SeaGuardian unmanned aerial drone and the high mobility artillery rocket system (HIMARS).

Quoted from the Eurasian Times, on August 31, 2022, Legislator Wang Ting-yu of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) announced that Taiwan had officially signed a contract with the United States for the purchase of four SeaGuardian MQ-9B unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for NT$10. $16.88 billion (US$555 million). The deal will strengthen Taiwan's defenses by enhancing its intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities.

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, a US defense contractor, manufactures the SeaGuardian MQ-9B drone, a maritime variant of the MQ-9 Reaper. Four SeaGardian UAVs and associated hardware and support systems for ground control stations are included in the amount of NT$16.88 billion. The MQ-9B is projected to enhance the Taiwan Air Force's long-range surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities in the waters surrounding Taiwan.

Quoted from, the MQ-9B SeaGuardian is designed to fly over the horizon via SATCOM for up to 30 hours (depending on configuration). It is capable of flying in all types of weather and integrates safely into civilian airspace. It also allows it to enter into joint forces and civilian authorities to provide real-time situational awareness anywhere in the maritime domain day or night.

Lynx Multi-Mode Radar, advanced electro-optical/infrared sensors, automatic take-off and landing capability, and an impressive 79ft (24m) wingspan like SkyGuardian. SeaGuardian also includes a wide center area maritime radar mission kit, automatic identification system, and an optional standalone anti-submarine warfare (ASW) mission kit.

SeaGuardian integrates the most advanced maritime intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities. It is also the first RPAS in its class to enable real-time search and patrol above and below sea level.

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