- Global Positioning System
- Unmanned Aerial Vehicle
- Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle
Saab corporation of Sweden has announced that the SHARC Unmanned Aerial Vehicle
(UAV) Technical Demonstrator successfully performed autonomous take-off, fly
away, and landing operations on August 25, 2004. The test took place at Swedish
Defense Material Administration test site in Vidsel
This event marks an important milestone for the Swedish defense industry with
Saab joining the few companies that succeed in conducting a totally autonomous
flight. Moreover, Saab has strengthened its position in the emerging UAV global
market and future multi-national programs such as the European UCAV program led
After taking off without pilot assistance, the SHARC performed a totally
autonomous mission following a pre-programmed path and finally landed on its
own. The aircraft relied upon a differential GPS and a radar height finder to
succeed in landing operation. This test is part of the third test series
scheduled for this program. Autonomous landing and take off capabilities
are considered as a critical risk reduction to operations at dusk or in
darkness, in a safer way than pilot-controlled operations.
The SHARC demonstrator program developed by Saab started in 2001 with the first
flight reported in February 2002. The two previous test campaigns carried out in
Vidsel focused on both within the visual range and beyond the visual range
autonomous flights. The data gathered along these tests, laid the foundation for
the successful take-off and landing operations.
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