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Athena To Develop Flight Controls For Morphing UAV

File photo: The Morphing UAV is part of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.
by Staff Writers
Warrenton VA (SPX) Apr 06, 2006
Athena Technologies has announced that it has won a contract from Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company to implement the flight controls for Lockheed Martin's Morphing UAV. The Morphing UAV is part of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) Morphing Aircraft Structures (MAS) program, to which Lockheed Martin Skunk Works is a contractor.

The MAS program will develop ground-breaking technologies to radically change the shape of an aircraft's wings in flight in order to rapidly accommodate a new mission. For example, by expanding and contracting wing structures in flight, a single aircraft can perform both loitering surveillance and reconnaissance missions and high-speed attack missions, which is unprecedented.

Under the contract, Athena will provide Lockheed Martin with its GuideStar(TM) navigation and flight control system and integration. The GuideStar 111m is an advanced, miniaturized system specifically designed for small, high-performance UAV applications. It integrates navigation, control and vehicle management in one unit which is about the same size as a cigarette pack. In addition, the GS-111m design is based on Athena's patented and proven flight controls technology, which has a strong track record of reducing the overall life cycle cost of designing and developing multiple wide-ranging UAVs. The first flight of the Morphing UAV is scheduled for Summer 2006.

"Athena's products and expertise are critical for the success of this revolutionary program, "said Charles Chase, MAS Program Manager for Lockheed Martin's Advanced Development Programs. "With their experience in implementing flight controls in many types of UAVs, from Tactical UAVs, to ducted fan UAVS, Target Drones, and missiles, we are confident we have chosen a dependable partner in this endeavor."

"Athena is honored to work with such an erospace industry giant as Lockheed Martin," said Dr. David Vos, Athena's CEO. "Morphing Aircraft Systems technology, with proven advanced flight controls, will enable first-ever maneuverability in unmanned aircraft that essentially mimics the way raptors fly. This will ultimately provide a new domain of capabilities for military operations. We are excited to be involved in this program," he added.

Related Links
Athena Technologies
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics
DARPA Morphing Aircraft Structures Program

New Products For Mini And Micro UAVs Save Space And Volume Boost Endurance
Kibbutz Merom Golan, Israel (SPX) Apr 04, 2006
Bental Industries has introduced a range of new products especially developed for current mini and future micro UAVs. This new line addresses the challenges of control, motion and observation in a remotely controlled highly compact airborne platform.

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