Aurora to work on SolarEagle

Jan. 11, 2012 at 2:19 PM

MANASSAS, Va., Jan. 11 (UPI) -- Virginia-based Aurora Flight Sciences has announced receipt of a contract to produce structural components for a new UAV.

The unmanned aerial vehicle, the SolarEagle, is being developed by Boeing Defense, Space & Security under the Vulture program of the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

SolarEagle, scheduled to fly in 2014, is a high-altitude UAV that would operate continuously for five years. It will use solar power.

Aurora said the contract from Boeing is for the manufacture of ribs and skins for the aircraft's 400-foot-long wing and solar collection panels.

The components would be used on a sub-scale test UAV and a full-sized flight demonstrator.

"Aurora will have to push the limits of materials and the imagination to create answers to the demanding requirements of this very large yet gossamer aircraft," said Tom Clancy, Aurora's vice president and chief technology officer. "We are delighted to have been chosen for such an important role."

The value of the contract to design and manufacture the structural components was not disclosed.

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