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Kosovo awaits Puma LE

25th January 2022 - 14:28 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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 Pictured in January 2021, US soldiers set up the controls for an RQ-20 Puma UAS at Camp Nothing Hill in Kosovo. (Photo: US Air National Guard/Staff Sgt Tawny Schmit)

Shephard calculates that Kosovo is obtaining 40 Puma LE reconnaissance UASs under the FMS programme.

The Kosovo Armed Forces are to receive the RQ-20 Puma Long Endurance (LE) UAS from AeroVironment via the FMS programme, the US DoD revealed on 21 January.

Sole bidder AeroVironment was due to complete work on the $11.01 million contract on 25 January.

Shephard Defence Insight estimates that Kosovo has ordered 40 units in total, based on an estimated unit cost of $215,000.

Puma LE features the AeroVironment-made Mantis i45 gimballed payload with EO/IR cameras and a laser illuminator. Its standard 5.5h mission endurance can be extended to 6.5h with the installation of a Puma Smart 2500 battery.

US troops serving in Kosovo as part of the KFOR peacekeeping mission are known to have used Puma for border surveillance missions.

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