NATO drone crashes in northern Afghanistan

July 28th, 2010 - 8:49 pm ICT by BNO News  

KABUL (BNO NEWS) — A unmanned aerial vehicle crashed in northern Afghanistan on Wednesday, NATO-led International Security Assistance Force said.

ISAF said the vehicle, a Luna UAV, contains no weapons or intelligence that could be exploited by enemy forces. The drone was remotely piloted from a ground station and crashed in Kunduz province.

“The Luna is slightly larger than an average toy remote-controlled airplane purchased from a hobby shop,” said Col. Hans Bush, ISAF Joint Command spokesperson. “Reports of the Taliban ‘capturing a reconnaissance plane’ after it made a emergency landing are misleading. Even if the vehicle was intact after it went down, it has absolutely no value to enemy forces.”

The unmanned system suffered from mechanical problems and went down in the Taliban stronghold area of Qal’ah-ye Zal district.

“Because the aircraft went down in an area known to be littered with IEDS and has absolutely no benefit to the enemy, we decided not to recover it,” Bush added.

The Luna is 2.28 meters (approximately 7 feet) long has a take-off weight of 37 kilograms, or about 80 pounds. It is powered by a two-cylinder, two-stroke engine similar to a lawnmower motor.

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