University pioneers unmanned air plane

University pioneers unmanned air plane

ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
University pioneers unmanned air plane

The Middle East Technical University has pioneered an unmanned vehicle, which can avoid radar detection. The plane has a 150-kilometer range can carry 25 kilos. Courtesy of METU

A research and development team at Middle East Technical University (ODTÜ) in Ankara has produced a tactical unmanned air vehicle which can fly independently and avoid radar detection. The vehicle has a range of 150 kilometers and a carrying capacity of 25 kilograms.

Professor Nafiz Alemdaroğlu, a lecturer at the university’s Aerospace Engineering Department, told Anatolia news agency that the research into the technology behind the air vehicle began in 2004 in their department, with the support of the State Planning Organization (DPT).

“Over the past three years, we’ve overseen projects which not only contributed to the development of an unmanned air vehicle but also to improving liquid fuel engines,” said Alemdaroğlu. “In the process of developing these technologies, we set up a center which at first manufactured an unmanned aircraft capable of flying autonomously for 10 kilometers and landing on its undercarriage.”

The research teams put the final finishing touches on the tactical unmanned air vehicle and completed its final test flight while they were working on these projects.

In addition to having a 25-kilogram carrying capacity and having a range of 150 kilometers, the vehicles can also remain in the air independently for six hours. The aircraft does not require a long runway for taking off, while all of its constituent parts are produced in Turkey.