By Anthony Garreffa
Iran will be doing some test flights soon, according to officials at the IRGC's Aerospace Exhibition. Iran showcased its reverse-engineered drone next to the original US built on, with the exhibition seeing Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Khamenei, state that the Iranian model sports an advanced system of data collection, video and radar telecommunications.
During a broadcast on Iranian TV, an officer said:
Back in 2011, Iran claimed that it found the UAV flying over Iranian airspace, something that the US military acknowledged. The US filed a formal request for Iran to return the RQ-170, but Iran refused, instead demanding that the US apologize for its intelligence operation over its territory. While the United States hasn't confirmed it, Iran has said that it used its advanced radio electronic warfare skills and vulnerabilities in the RQ-170's GPS receiver, tricking it into landing on Iranian territory.
The reason why this makes sense, is that the RQ-170 drone that Iran captured, does not have any visible damage - something it would, if it crash landed or was taken out of the sky by surface-to-air missiles. Since 2011, Iran has been hunting down other UAVs, spotting two RQ-11s and one ScanEagle that had penetrated Iranian airspace from the Persian Gulf.
Hossein Salami, the Lieutenant Commander General of Iran's Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution said:
Further Reading: Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control, by Medea Benjamin