Boeing, Korean Air Partner on Combat Helo Drones

By S.L. Fuller | September 26, 2016
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Korean Air's aerospace division and Boeing have renewed a project to convert some South Korean military helicopters into unmanned aerial systems (UAS).

The companies signed a memorandum of agreement at Korean Air's Seoul headquarters last week, according to a company press release. The agreement calls for the development of unmanned aircraft by converting MH 500MD Defense helicopters.

Per the agreement, Boeing will provide technical support for flight control and other data, as well as for test evaluations. Both companies are also set to implement an overseas joint marketing program.


This agreement comes after Korean Air successfully completed a remodel of the ROK Air Force's retired 500MDs to unmanned rotorcraft from 2014 to May of this year. Now, Korean Air has launched a new project to remodel the 500MDs into unmanned, armed aircraft. The project will run until 2017.

The combat aircraft will be able to perform day and night reconnaissance and surveillance missions, as well as conduct short-distance precision strikes.

Photo courtesy of the Republic of Korea Armed Forces

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