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Thai navy prepares MALE UAV acquisition

23rd December 2021 - 11:00 GMT | by Sompong Nondhasa in Bangkok

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The Hermes 900 from Israel is one of four contenders for the Thai navy’s MALE UAV requirement. (Elbit Systems)

Thailand will select a new MALE-class UAV for the navy early next year.

The Royal Thai Navy (RTN) is in the process of procuring a MALE UAV to enhance marine surveillance over a longer range and wider scope, as well as supporting other tactical missions.

In December, the RTN’s Naval Acquisition Management Office published a document detailing a competitive tender to purchase UAVs for coastal aviation bases, with a budget of THB3.96 billion ($118.69 million).

There are four contenders in the competition: the Heron TP from Israel Aerospace Industries, Hermes 900 from Elbit Systems, the Wing Loong II from China, and the US MQ-9 Reaper.

Requirements include a long operational range and

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