Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Longer wings boost Predator B flight endurance time

The Predator B remotely piloted aircraft, known as the MQ-9 Reaper, has successfully performed its first flight with extended wings for greater endurance.
The flight took place last month at Gray Butte Flight Test Facility in Palmdale, Calif., using a test aircraft, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. said."Predator B ER's [extended range] new 79-foot wing span not only boosts the RPA's endurance and range, but also serves as proof-of-concept for the next-generation Predator B aircraft that will be designed for Type-Certification and airspace integration," said Linden Blue, GA-ASI's chied executive officer. "The wing was designed to conform to STANAG 4671, and includes lightning and bird strike protection, non-destructive testing, and advanced composite and adhesive materials for extreme environments."STANAG 4671 is NATO's airworthiness standard for RPA systems. more