Boeing’s Loyal Wingman drone completes first high-speed taxi test

Boeing and the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) have completed the first-ever high-speed taxi test of the Airpower Teasing System (ATS) unmanned aircraft, also known as Loyal Wingman.

The test took place on December 21st 2020 at RAAF Woomera Airfield, a remote test location in Australia. Boeing and RAAF personnel monitored the unmanned aerial vehicle from a ground station while it was accelerating on the runway.

The test, as Boeing states, is “in preparation for the first flight in 2021”. Loyal Wingman has already undergone low and medium-speed taxi tests after its official roll-out on May 5th.

Our test program is progressing well, and we are happy with the ground test data we have collected to date,”

“We are working with the Air Warfare Centre to complete final test verifications to prepare for flight testing in the new year.”

said Paul Ryder, Boeing Flight Test manager.

Loyal Wingman is the result of a cooperation between Boeing and the Royal Australian Air Force. The RAAF plans to operate three of the drones, demonstrating how to integrate drones with fighter jets and other manned assets. Loyal Wingman can carry multiple sensors to perform ISR and electronic warfare missions.

Matteo Tivan

Matteo is a writer for AviationHub365, who lives in Northern Italy. Whilst he enjoys all types aviation, he mainly focuses on military news and analysis. Matteo enjoys flying RC aircraft and going to airshows to capture images of aircraft.

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