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Fuel cell doubles UAV flight time

Dec. 9, 2010 at 9:32 AM

SINGAPORE, Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Horizon Energy's AEROPAK fuel power cell system has been successfully tested in an Israeli-made, man-portable unmanned aerial vehicle.

Horizon, which has its headquarters in Singapore, said the system has been proved to be a ready drop-in replacement for UAV battery backs currently used.

A test flight was carried out by Elbit Systems in Israel. The test involved takeoff and recovery with an operational payload integrated onboard in simulated battlefield conditions.

The UAV was also flown in turbulent weather to gauge AEROPAK's capability to sustain continuous high power drain from the aircraft's motor.

Equipped with the AEROPAK fuel cell system, which delivers 900Wh net usable energy per quart of fuel, the Skylark I-LE vehicle will offer the vehicle's users enhanced flight duration, doubling the current endurance of the UAS, Horizon said.

Elbit's Skylark I-LE is a tactical man-portable unmanned aerial system used in close range, beyond-the-next-hill surveillance and reconnaissance missions by several nations.

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