Protests have been held outside RAF Lossiemouth to oppose the use of the controversial new Protector drone.
A pre-production version of SkyGuardian, also known as Protector, is currently running test flights from the Moray base.
A fleet of 16 of the drones, which have a 79ft wingspan, are due to enter operation from Lincolnshire-based RAF Waddington in 2024.
However, concerns have been raised by campaigners about Protector, amid fears they have the drone may lose contact with the ground.
What are the drone concerns?
Anti-drone campaigners from across the UK protested outside the gates of RAF Lossiemouth on Saturday.
However, the arrival of the technology in the north-east has also drawn aviation enthusiasts eager to get a look at the aircraft in the sky.
Protector has been spotted flying in the area this month while it is in the north-east as part of the war games operation Exercise Joint Warrior.
The campaign group waved banners opposing the use of military drones in the country.
Campaigners have argued that the Protector drone test flights should be cancelled due to safety concerns.
Planned flights of Protector in San Diego last year did not go ahead after talks between manufacturer General Atomics and the Federal Aviation Authority stalled.
The missions instead took place over desert instead of over the city.
Tim Street, campaign coordinator of UK Drone Watch, said: “General Atomics should not be allowed to use the UK’s airspace as a glorified showroom just so they can sell armed drones to US allies.
“Local residents need to know the risks of large military drones being flown over their homes and workplaces.
What will Protector be used for?
“We are protesting because the government’s drone’s policy must be subject to democracy, transparency and accountability so that abuses of power are prevented.”
The Ministry of Defence says Protector will be deployed in intelligence, surveillance, targeting and reconnaissance missions.
It will be able to fly for up to 40 hours and will replace the Reaper fleet, which is currently in operation in the Middle East.
However, unlike Reaper, Protector it will be able to fly in unsegregated airspace due to its advanced detect and avoid technology.
The MoD has stressed it the drone will comply with Civil Aviation Authority rules at all times.
The CAA has granted temporary permission for Protector to operate from RAF Waddington and RAF Lossiemouth from August until October.
A spokesman added: “SkyGuardian is operating in airspace where it will be receiving a service from air traffic controllers.
“The temporary airspace changes make sure other aircraft are excluded from the area unless they and SkyGuardian can sense and avoid each other during the period of departure, arrival and while the aircraft is operating within the temporary danger areas established around the aerodromes.
“The SkyGuardian is a civilian aircraft flown by its manufacturer General Atomics. We are satisfied that it meets the safety requirements for a large remotely piloted aircraft.”