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No skylarking as Elbit demonstrates new UAS

11th April 2022 - 18:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Skylark 3 Hybrid high resolution, gimbaled and stabilised dual EO/IR payload system provides advanced mission capabilities to facilitate a wide range of operations. (Photo: Elbit Systems)

Elbit Systems demonstrates its dual-propulsion Skylark 3 Hybrid system at RAF Upavon on Wiltshire.

Elbit Systems has successfully demonstrated its Skylark 3 Hybrid UAS in support of the RAF’s Rapid Capabilities Office’s future concept development programme.

Unveiled in February 2022 at the Singapore Airshow, the Skylark 3 Hybrid joins Elbit’s family of UAS and its predecessor, the Skylark 3.

According to the company, not only does the system’s hybrid propulsion improve mission reliability, redundancy, safety and performance, but it also may contribute to the UK MoD’s net-zero ambition.

The Skylark 3 is a field-deployed tactical ISTAR UAS, optimised for either dismounted or vehicle-based operations. It has a 4.7m wingspan, 48kg MTOW, 120km range and a service ceiling of 12,000ft.

Its two separate propulsion systems, electric and internal combustion, combine to deliver an endurance of up to 18h.

The system uses thrust from both engines to launch and reach a certain altitude, after which only one engine is required for continued flight.

Martin Fausset, CEO of Elbit Systems UK, said the tests represented the company’s efforts to ‘provide an environmentally responsible and energy-efficient method of maximising the Skylark’s endurance’.

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