Israel's military avatar: Robots on the battlefield, I

size of their engines, the amount of fuel they must carry and the altitudes they have to attain. Every gram counts. If they are loaded down with heavy systems, they won’t be able to carry out their missions.”

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), for example, has developed the Mosquito, a UAV with a 40-centimeter wingspan and a silent engine, that can be launched from the shoulder of a single soldier. Even this device may be shrunken down, if the military so requires.

The future battlefield will also include outer space. GPS-based technology fed by satellites are already becoming a fundamental element in future military systems. Moreover, the ability to equip satellites with IAI-produced radar that sees through clouds will enable every field commander to obtain,

in daylight and at night and in any weather conditions, a picture of his target.

Moreover, space-based weapons, or satellites, will also serve as a component in projects for the destruction of long-range missiles from distant enemies facing Israel, such as Iran. When satellites become a critical means in military operations, defending them becomes just as critical, making space wars a realistic development.

Israel is one of seven members of the club of countries that have proved their independent ability to put satellites into orbit, alongside the United States, Russia, India, China, Japan, and Western Europe — which has a unified space program based on French capabilities. Iran has recently also demonstrated a preliminary capability to launch satellites.

Israel’s satellites are all manufactured by IAI, and include optical observation and radar platforms as well as communications satellites. IAI engineers are working on technologies for future satellites, ranging from construction materials to advanced designs that will enable, for example, the deployment of antennae with a radius of dozens of meters in space. Such antennae could lead to a revolution in advanced satellite communications.

At the same time, IAI is working on developing integrated systems of up to ten smaller satellites that will upgrade inter-satellite communications and the data picked up by land stations.

Within this group, technology-wise, we are second only to the United States, and in certain niches we are even number one, especially in mini-

which also serves espionage purposes and weighs 300 kilograms. The American counterpart weighs three or four tons.

The need to reduce the size of the satellite sprang from the