— sara (@sara_HR4All) March 20, 2012
Following the U.S. Navy’s announcement that it’s doubling the number of minesweeping ships in the Strait of Hormuz, Iran announced the production of its new drone the Shaparak (Butterfly).
The news comes through PressTV and while Tehran may want to impart the drone’s design comes after capturing the U.S.’s RQ-70 Sentinel drone late last year, this design has been in the works for some time.
FARS reported in September that the Butterfly’s design was created by students at the Modern Technologies Engineering College of Tabriz University with the goal of keeping the craft aloft at great heights, for extended periods of time.
It’s not entirely unlikely that Tehran would like to keep a better eye on the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, currently stationed in Bahrain and patrolling the Strait of Hormuz.
To that end, the new drone will be capable of flying at 15,000 feet for three-and-a-half hours, with an operational radius of about 31 miles.
In addition to its three high-resolution color cameras, the Butterfly will capable of carrying a 17-pound payload.
— christinA eijkhout (@mumke) March 19, 2012
— Lis Duarte (@lisduarte) March 19, 2012
— Aly-Khan Satchu (@alykhansatchu) March 19, 2012