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RQ-11B Raven

The RQ-11 Raven Small Unmanned Aircraft System in flight. (courtesy photo)

The RQ-11 Raven Small Unmanned Aircraft System in flight. (courtesy photo)

Staff Sgt. Leland Hastings, of the 919th Special Operations Security Forces Squadron, launches a Raven-B, a 4-by-4 foot unmanned aerial system, into the skies above Camp Guernsey, Wyo., Aug. 4, 2015. The 919th SOSFS brought the UAS to demonstrate its capabilities to other security forces units involved in a large field training exercise at the camp. The Raven-B has the ability to take photos, video in day or night, and even designate locations via an IR laser.  It also provides coordinates, magnetic azimuths, and linear distances creating a birds-eye view to topographical map. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Sam King)

Staff Sgt. Leland Hastings, of the 919th Special Operations Security Forces Squadron, launches a Raven-B, a 4-by-4 foot unmanned aerial system, into the skies above Camp Guernsey, Wyo., Aug. 4, 2015. The 919th SOSFS brought the UAS to demonstrate its capabilities to other security forces units involved in a large field training exercise at the camp. The Raven-B has the ability to take photos, video in day or night, and even designate locations via an IR laser. It also provides coordinates, magnetic azimuths, and linear distances creating a birds-eye view to topographical map. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Sam King)


Mission
The RQ-11B Raven small unmanned aircraft system provides real-time direct intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) and target information for Air Force Security Forces. The Raven falls into the class of Air Force small UAS known as man-packable UAS.

Features
The Raven system has three air vehicles (AV), two ground control stations (GCS), transit cases and support equipment. Two specially trained Airmen operate the Raven. The AV can be controlled manually or can autonomously navigate a preplanned route.

The Raven includes gimbaled EO/IR payloads and either fixed electro-optical (EO) or infrared (IR) payload. The air vehicle is hand-launched, weighs less than five pounds and an endurance of up to 90 minutes.

Background
The Raven UAS has proven itself in combat supporting U.S. operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. 

General Characteristics
Primary Function:
Low-altitude ISR
Contractor: AeroVironment, Inc.
Power Plant: Direct drive electric motor
Wingspan: 4.5 feet (1.37 meters)
Length: 3 feet
Aircraft Weight: 4.8 lbs (with gimbaled payload)
GCS Weight: 9 lbs 
Cruise Speed: 26 mph 
Range: 10 km 
Endurance: 60-90 minutes
Altitude (operations): 150-1000 feet air ground level  
System Cost: approximately $260,000 
Payload: Gimbaled EO/IR and fixed EO or IR payload
Date deployed: 2004

(Current as of March 2017)