High altitude drone completes first flight

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A prototype of Californian-company UAVOS’ high altitude pseudo-satellite (HAPS), the ApusDuo, has successfully completed its first flight.

As seen in this video, the 10m (33ft) wide HAPS, is covered by solar cells and is extremely light, giving its flight a kite-like appearance.

The production version of the ApusDuo will be 28m (92ft) wide and is designed to stay in the stratosphere for up to a year.

The flight testing has proved control algorithms, including take-off and landing, full-scale verification of the HAPS aerodynamics and its flight characteristics.

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Ben has worked as a journalist and editor, covering almost all aspects of technology, engineering and industry for the last 20 years. Initially writing about subjects from nuclear submarines to autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies, he was editor of a leading UK-based engineering magazine before eventually becoming editor of Aerospace Testing in 2017.

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