The Israeli Ministry of Defense has announced the start of test flights for its most advanced surveillance aircraft, the Oron. The announcement comes after Israeli Aerospace Industries (IAI) completed the integration of new, state-of-the-art intelligence systems into the reconnaissance plane after two years.
The trials are expected to assess the Oron’s ability to accurately track multiple targets over vast distances and challenging weather conditions.
The test flight will be supervised by IAI, the ministry’s Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D), and the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF
The plane is a Gulfstream G550 Aerospace aircraft outfitted with cutting-edge sensors, cameras, and command, control, communications, computer, and intelligence (C4I) systems.
According to the ministry, the plane is the product of years of research, utilizing knowledge and expertise from local and international partners.
It is designed to help the Air Force counter future threats across various fronts, thanks to its maximum altitude of 50,000 feet (15,240 meters) and flight range of 1,000 kilometers (623 miles).
The ministry also stated that the spy plane boasts a real-time monitoring capability that is more advanced than unmanned aerial vehicles.
“Oron is a joint multi-domain, multi-sensor solution which will provide the IDF with game-changing capabilities to counter threats far and near,” DDR&D official Lt. Col. Yoed said.
You can watch the video below.
Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign assistance since World War II.
Successive Administrations, working with Congress, have provided Israel with assistance
reflective of robust domestic U.S. support for Israel and its security; shared strategic goals in the
Middle East; a mutual avowed commitment to democratic values; and historical ties dating from
U.S. support for the creation of Israel in 1948. To date, the United States has provided Israel $158 billion (current, or noninflation-adjusted, dollars) in bilateral assistance and missile defense funding. At present, almost all U.S. bilateral aid to
Israel is in the form of military assistance; from 1971 to 2007, Israel also received significant economic assistance.
In 2016, the U.S. and Israeli governments signed their third 10-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on military aid,
covering FY2019 to FY2028. Under the terms of the MOU, the United States pledged to provide—subject to congressional
appropriation—$38 billion in military aid ($33 billion in Foreign Military Financing (FMF) grants plus $5 billion in missile
defense appropriations) to Israel.
Israel is the first international operator of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the Department of Defense’s fifth-generation stealth
aircraft, considered to be the most technologically advanced fighter jet ever made. To date, Israel has purchased 50 F-35s in
three separate contracts, funded with U.S. assistance, and has taken delivery of 36.
For FY2023, Congress authorized $520 million for joint U.S.-Israel defense programs (including $500 million for missile
defense) in the FY2023 James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act. Per the terms of the MOU, Congress
appropriated $3.8 billion for Israel (FMF and missile defense) in the FY2023 Consolidated Appropriations Act, and added
$98.58 million in funding for other cooperative defense and nondefense programs