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Friday, December 14, 2007       Free Headline Alerts

New facility training drone operators from around the world

TEL AVIV Israel is home to a new growth industry the training of operators of unmanned aerial vehicles.

Israel's Elbit Systems has opened a facility to train UAV operators from around the world. The company has designed, produced and sold a range of tactical UAVs to the Israeli military and NATO members.

The UAV center is based in the northern Israeli city of Haifa. Executives said the company has trained operators on the Hermes, Skylark and other platforms.

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Executives said Elbit Systems has formulated courses for beginners and experienced UAV operators, Middle East Newsline reported. They said the facility provided instruction in avionics, electronics and image analysis.

Courses range from 10 days to one month and include the use of simulators. Instructors consist of reserve officers from the Israel Air Force.

Elbit Systems has sold the Skylark to Australia and Canada. Executives said personnel from the two militaries, which deployed the UAVs in Afghanistan and Iraq, have trained at the new facility.

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