Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Also Known As: Brevel and Kleinfluggerät Zielortung
Parent System: KZO
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 2005
Total Production: 60
Total Cost: USD$351 million
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Description: The Kleinfluggerät Zielortung (KZO) is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) developed as the Brevel system to provide artillery units with precise, real-time target location at the brigade level. It can operate by day, night and adverse weather conditions. The KZO airborne reconnaissance system can provide battlefield imagery as well as target data.
A single KZO UAV system consists of 10 KZO UAVs, two ground support system for each air vehicle, a ground control station, a data link vehicle, a launch vehicle, refurbishing vehicle and recovery vehicle as well as a crew of four men. The KZO is launched from its container by a rocket booster or using a catapult. Landing operation relies on a parachute and multiple airbags. It can be loitering for six hours at more than 100 kilometers from the launch location.
The interference-free, real-time, wideband data-link with a maximum range over more than 120 kilometers is supplied by EADS. The small size and reduced silhouette along with the fact that KZO is made of plastic translates into a low optical and radar signatures thus providing overall increased survivability to an expendable unmanned platform. Actually, the German Army considers KZO virtually invisible. KZO is also cheaper and simpler than other reconnaissance and targeting systems.
On 11 December 2001, the German Army ordered 6 KZO systems including 60 air vehicles and 12 ground control stations worth €280 million ($351 million). Deliveries, due to begin in 2005, were scheduled to be complete by 2007. To date, the KZO drone has been deployed within NATO coalition forces.
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