Iran Unveils Bootleg Copy of US Sentinel Stealth Drone

By Jesus Diaz on at

Thanks to reverse engineering, Iranian aerospace experts have successfully copied and manufactured their own version of a Lockheed Martin Sentinel RQ-170 stealth drone.

The replica of a captured US vehicle—confirmed by the CIA as shot down over the North East of Iran in 2011—was unveiled at a press conference by the Iranian National Guard in Tehran on Sunday. Last year Iran released decoded footage from the captured drone to show plausible progress in unlocking its secrets.

They say imitation is the greatest form of flattery and the bootleg version sure does look like a Sentinel, as pointed out in media reports, but it has yet to be demonstrated actually flying. Iranian drones don't have the best track record here and the country's Supreme Leader, who proudly tweeted the news yesterday and can be seen inspecting the drone in the lead image, may yet be in for a disappointment.