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Friday, June 12, 2015

No land role for $2.5bn Triton maritime drones

MQ-4C TritonAustralia plans to spend about $2.5 billion for up to seven unmanned Triton maritime drones in a move which will transform Australia’s ability to patrol its vast maritime approaches.

But the air force’s hopes of having a special land-tracking feature incorporated into the Triton drones looks unlikely after Defence overruled the air force and recommended against investing in the joint development of the new aircraft with the US Navy.

The Ground Moving Target Indicator, which would allow the drones to pinpoint and identify a target such as a suspected terrorist travelling by land was going to be included only if Australia invested up front in the US Triton program.

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