27/08/2020

DARPA's X-61A Gremlin completes additional flight

DARPA’s Gremlins Program completes second flight test in demonstration series – link

Source: Defence Talk

Article Headlines
  • Over several days in July, the technology development team completed multiple flight tests of the Gremlins air-vehicle ground and recovery systems, including demonstration of a recovery system safely retrieving and stowing the air vehicles
  • The team also conducted a controlled launch of a Gremlin flying for more than two hours and performed rendezvous and autonomous formation station-keeping between the air vehicle and a C-130 at a separation of 125 feet
  • The July flights follow the program’s first flight test in November 2019, during which the program completed one captive-carry mission, and an airborne launch and free flight lasting more than 90 minutes
  • The program now calls for flight tests to resume in October with the key objective to recover first one, and then two, air vehicles in the same flight
  • By the end of the year, the program aims to complete the test series, culminating with airborne recovery of four Gremlins within 30 minutes
  • This final demonstration will showcase the capability of safe, effective, and efficient air recoveries, opening the way to dramatically expand the application and utility of attritable UASs
  • Mission flexibility and affordability are the key attributes of the Gremlins system, which would launch groups of UASs from multiple types of military aircraft while the latter remain beyond the range of adversary defenses
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