|AirMule VTOL UAS. Photo: Tactical Robotics
[Avionics Today 01-05-2016] Tactical Robotics’ AirMule Vertical TakeOff and Landing (VTOL) Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) has successfully completed its first autonomous, untethered flight at the Megiddo airfield in northern Israel on Dec. 30.
"2015 was a challenging year that included a ground incident that damaged our AirMule demonstrator,” the Israeli company said in a statement regarding the first autonomous flight of the VTOL UAS. “While the repair of the aircraft imposed a delay of several months on our development schedule, it also gave us an opportunity to make significant upgrades to the aircraft systems. We installed new equipment and integrated new safety features. In parallel to the repair and upgrade activity we initiated and carried out a rigorous examination process with the Israeli [Civil Aviation Authority] CAA in order to get authorization for untethered flight testing.”Ã¢â¬Â¨
Additionally, Tactical Robotics has achieved category 2 certification for an export variant of the aircraft known as Cormorant, under the international Missile Technology Control Regime (MCTR), which the company cites as an important element in the eventual marketing of the aircraft. Tactical Robotics will continue testing the aircraft with plans for a demonstration of AirMule's cargo delivery capability as well as a Beyond the Line of Sight (BLOS) flight.