An Instagram account claiming to be of a Russian pilot posted a video showed a dangerous pass ahead of a U.S. MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft flying above Syria.
It should be noted that MQ-9 Reaper is an armed, multi-mission, medium-altitude, long-endurance remotely piloted aircraft that has turboprop engine. Russian fighter can produce “jetwash” or wake turbulence that that poses a serious risk to nearby aircraft and especially for remotely piloted aircraft.
The MQ-9 aircraft operates from standard U.S. airfields with clear line-of-sight to the ground data terminal antenna, which provides line-of-sight communications for takeoff and landing. The PPSL provides over-the-horizon communications for the aircraft and sensors.
The remotely piloted aircraft can be disassembled and loaded into a single container for deployment worldwide. The entire system can be transported in the C-130 Hercules, or larger aircraft.
The primary concept of operations, remote split operations, employs a launch-and-recovery ground control station for take-off and landing operations at the forward operating location, while the crew based in continental United States executes command and control of the remainder of the mission via beyond-line-of-sight links.
Remote split operations result in a smaller number of personnel deployed to a forward location, consolidate control of the different flights in one location, and as such, simplify command and control functions as well as the logistical supply challenges for the weapons system.