UV - Unmanned Vehicles

First auto-landing of MQ-9 Block 5

20th September 2018 - 15:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The US Air Force has completed the first automated landing of an MQ-9 Block 5, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI) announced on 17 September.

The automated landing was followed by the first auto-takeoff two days later.

The new automatic takeoff and landing capability (ATLC) was developed by GA-ASI to enhance mission capabilites. It will help increase safety and efficiency and enlarge the aircraft's operational envelope for cross wind operations.

David Alexander, president, Aircraft Systems, GA-ASI, said: ‘This new, all-weather capability greatly increases the autonomy, flexibility, combat effectiveness and safety of the MQ-9 Reaper for the USAF. Adding this level of automation will reduce the deployment burden of the warfighter and expand the scope of missions that can be flown by air force MQ-9s.’

The ATLC development programme remains on track for fielding in the fall of 2019.

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