Taiwan’s Sea Guardians will up-link with ST-2 satellite
The General Atomics Sea Guardian unmanned air vehicles that Taiwan intends to purchase will rely on the ST-2 telecommunications satellite for the uplink back to the ground control station.
By U.S. Customs and Border Protection [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Up Media says the wiliness of the United States to allow Taiwan to use the satellite uplink for the MQ-9 was a key factor in persuading the island to use a foreign product instead of the indigenous Teng Yun drone.
Two decades ago, the country had selected the MQ-1 and was negotiating to buy the unmanned aircraft. However, restrictions due to the Missile Technology Control Regime made the Americans take away the satellite uplink function of the Predator. Taiwan was also restricted from operating the MQ-1 at long distances with modified fuel tanks that have smaller capacities. Taking all these limitations into consideration, Taipei walked away from the purchase of the MQ-1.
Another factor against the Teng Yun unmanned air vehicle was that it still does not have the ability to fly a pre-programed route to land back at its base if the control signal is lost or jammed.
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