An Improved Gray Eagle UAV has flown for 45 hours nonstop in the first of two planned Army endurance tests.
The first test was performed with the aircraft in a reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition configuration. For the second test, planned for later this year, the Improved Gray Eagle will carry a wing-mounted external payload and weapons, according to Gray Eagle-builder General Atomics Aeronautical Systems.
The Improved Gray Eagle is nore powerful, with a maximum takeoff weight of 4,200 pounds compared with 3,600 pounds for the standard Gray Eagle. Internal fuel capacity is 850 pounds plus an optional external tank with 450 pounds, versus the regular Gray Eagle’s 575 pounds. Payload capacity has also been increased to 540 pounds from 400 pounds.