Ecuador: Drones strengthen security in high-risk areas

Ecuador’s UAV-2 Gavilán unmanned aircraft prototype, which has a flight endurance of seven hours, will be used for surveillance of border crossings, areas prone to natural disasters and territorial waters known to be used by human- and narco-trafficking organizations. (Courtesy of the Office of the President of the Republic of Ecuador)Ecuador in January unveiled its first unmanned aircraft, or drone, completely manufactured within the country, culminating five years of work.

UAV-2 Gavilán, the first prototype of the nation’s unmanned aircraft system, will be used to keep an eye on border crossings, areas prone to natural disasters and territorial waters used for drug and human trafficking.

Gavilán also will be used to monitor the border with Colombia to halt the traffic of illegal fuel and weapons.

“Ecuador is located in a region plagued by drug trafficking, smuggling, illegal migration and the illegal exploitation of minerals,” Director of the Research and Development Center of the Ecuadoran Air Force (FAE) Édgar Jaramillo said. “These circumstances have led us to think of new tools for obtaining information, which will facilitate the decision-making process in a timely and efficient manner.”

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