MQ-1C Gray Eagle Extended Range UAS Exceeds 40-Hour Test Flight Goal

By Mike Ball / 30 Aug 2017
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MQ-1C Gray Eagle Extended Range UAS

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI) has announced that its MQ-1C Gray Eagle Extended Range (MQ-1C ER) aircraft has completed a 41.9-hour endurance flight, exceeding the 40 hour flight test goal. The Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS), designed and developed by GA-ASI, flew out of El Mirage, Calif. in a representative U.S. Army mission configuration. Since the first flight of MQ-1C ER, the aircraft has flown 43 test flights and accumulated over 260 hours in the air.

“This is an important milestone for the MQ-1C ER program,” said David R. Alexander, president, Aircraft Systems, GA-ASI. “The MQ-1C ER represents a significant enhancement in capability over the currently fielded MQ-1C and will be a game changer on the battlefield in support of our Army customer.”

The MQ-1C ER production aircraft will shortly begin flight testing in Dugway, Utah for evaluation of the Army’s First Article Test (FAT). FAT will demonstrate MQ-1C ER’s mission capabilities, which include increased range, endurance, and payload capacity.

In January 2018, MQ-1C ER will go through Logistics Demonstration (Log Demo) where aircraft maintainability will be validated. After this, Follow-on Operational Test and Evaluation2 (FOTE2) will demonstrate the aircraft’s ability to meet all Army operational requirements in preparation for fielding, which is planned for August 2018.

Posted by Mike Ball Mike Ball is our resident technical editor here at Unmanned Systems Technology. Combining his passion for teaching, advanced engineering and all things unmanned, Mike keeps a watchful eye over everything related to the unmanned technical sector. With over 10 years’ experience in the unmanned field and a degree in engineering, Mike’s been heading up our technical team here for the last 8 years. Connect & Contact