ARCA performed a series of tests on rough ground for the Air Strato electrical powered unmanned aerial vehicle. The aircraft was accelerated to take-off speed to verify if the landing gear is able to hold on this type of runway. We also determined the required take-off distance.
Air Strato has a very low take-off speed of about 50 km/h and can use any type of runway, including concrete, grass landing strips, even improvised runways covered with mud.
The powerful electrical motors propel it to take off speed in a very short distance of max. 65m. This makes the aircraft able to be operated in a variety of conditions and the low take-off and landing distance make it possible utilise any flat strip of land available.
“We started with low speeds passes and gradually increased until we reached take-off speed. The electrical engines, in spite of there sizes, are very powerful and we reached 0 to 50 km/h in only 65 m. On concrete, the take-off speed was reached in only 50m. We haven’t installed wheel brakes yet so it took a while to come to a stop after engine cut-off. The runway was improvised by clearing the snow and leveling the ground a bit, but we didn’t do much more. Overall we are impressed on how well the aircraft performed.”
– said Dumitru Popescu, ARCA president.
Air Strato is a high altitude electrical powered unmanned aerial vehicle. It can reach altitudes of 18 km and has an autonomy of 7 hours on internal batteries and 3 days using solar panels.
In can carry a payload of 30 kg consisting of surveillance equipment or other scientific instruments. A commercial version will be available for purchase. In Romania it will be available to private individuals and enterprises only.