A production-ready, 1-ton, autonomous cargo delivery drone unveiled

Delivering battlefield supplies in war-torn areas can be very dangerous, as enemy forces may shoot down aircraft attempting to do so.

In order to aid this problem, a US-based Yates Electrospace Corporation (YEC) has designed the Silent Arrow GD-2000 cargo delivery drone. The company envisions the drone as a potential replacement for the Joint Precision Airdrop System (JPADS) delivery method that several armed forces use to deliver battlefield supplies.

Weighs at around 2,000lbs (907 kg), the Silent Arrow GD-2000 is capable of carrying the payload up to 1,631 pounds (740 kg), at less than half the cost of JPADS. It offers double the glide ratio, improved landing accuracy, zero vertical impact force and with greater stealth as it completes military logistics missions.

Its rectangular fuselage measures 2ft x 2ft x 8ft, according to YEC. With a 28-foot (8.5 m) wingspan, the UAV has a glide ratio of 8.4:1. Since it’s a glider, it’s also easier to steer to its target destination. Besides, when the situation calls for it, it can also be stealthy in a way that parachutes can’t.

As the aircraft reached within 40 miles (64 km) of its target, the Silent Arrow is released at an altitude of anywhere from as low as 1,500 feet AGL up to 25,000 feet MSL (mean sea level). At this time, its four wings fold out automatically, which allows it to silently glide to its destination.

Designed for military logistical support, Silent Arrow GD-2000 was unveiled this Tuesday, at the DSEI (Defence and Security Equipment International) show in London. The production is slated to start this October.

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