Warplanes: October 20, 2000

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of the aircraft failed.--Stephen V Cole

The French aircraft company Dassault has begun flight testing of the Air Vehicle Experimental, a prototype stealthy recon drone which first flew on 18 July. The AVE is 2.4m long and has an equal wingspan of 2.4m. The AVE weighs 35kg empty and has a maximum takeoff weight of 60kg. It has a range of 150km (93 miles) and a maximum speed of Mach-0.5. It can take off and land from a conventional runway but does have an emergency parachute recovery system. Dassault says that its AVE design could be adapted to any Unmanned Aerial Vehicle mission, but they are focusing their efforts on high speed recon with a secondary interest in air-to-air and air-to-ground combat.--Stephen V Cole

October 19, 2000; EADS (the European Aerospace and Defense giant) plans to build its own stealthy Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle to keep up with the US. The current design is an aircraft 12 meters long with a nine-meter wing span. The vehicle can carry weapons internally. Empty weight would be 4,500kg with a takeoff weight of

 


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