Loyal Wingman combat drone powers up engine for the first time

Sept. 16, 2020
Being developed for the global defense market as well as primary customer, the Australian Air Force, the Loyal Wingman is the first of three class prototypes to be built under Australia's Advanced Development Program, reports David Szondy for New Atlas.

BRISBANE, Australia - The age of the unmanned combat jet is a step closer after Boeing Australia announced that its Loyal Wingman aircraft has fired up its engine for the first time. On an undisclosed date this month, the autonomous drone powered up its commercial turbofan engine in anticipation of its first test flight, reports David Szondy for New AtlasContinue reading original article.

The Intelligent Aerospace take:

September 16, 2020 -This milestone comes on the heels of Boeing completing the first unmanned Loyal Wingman aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force earlier this year, a major step forward for the unmanned vehicle serving as the foundation for the global Boeing Airpower Teaming System, an artificial intelligence-powered teaming aircraft developed for the global defense market.

“This engine run gets us closer toward flying the first aircraft later this year and was successful thanks to the collaboration and dedication of our team,” said Dr. Shane Arnott, program director of the Boeing Airpower Teaming System. “We’ve been able to select a very light, off-the-shelf jet engine for the unmanned system as a result of the advanced manufacturing technologies applied to the aircraft.”

Related: Boeing Australia completes first 'Loyal Wingman' fuselage

Related: Boeing rolls out first Loyal Wingman unmanned aircraft

Related: Boeing’s Loyal Wingman program achieves ‘weight on wheels’ milestone

Jamie Whitney, Associate Editor
Intelligent Aerospace

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