Zephyr UAV wins awards
QinetiQ’s Zephyr team has received Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) awards for their world record breaking UAV.
The team was honoured by the IET for work on their High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) - winning both Emerging Technologies and Product Design categories at the IET Innovation Awards event held in London last week.
The 22-metre wing-span Zephyr has already achieved three official world records, including absolute flight endurance of 14 days, 22 minutes, 8 seconds in 2010 - when it flew to altitudes in excess of 70,000 feet (see previous news below).
Using solar power and rechargeable batteries, and with a total mass of around 50 kg, Zephyr is capable of hosting communications and remote camera payloads for months at a time. It promises formidable advantages in defence and security roles such as persistent wide-area comms relay, missile detection, intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and maritime patrol.
In declaring the project 'A clear winner', the judging panel commented 'Zephyr takes a giant step towards the goal of eternal flight - the concept of which is fascinating, exciting and with enormous opportunities.'
Details from QinetiQ below.