Silent Arrow drones carry out cargo delivery operations in the Middle East
Silent Arrow announced that a US ally’s air force branch conducted cargo delivery operations in the Middle East using Silent Arrow GD-2000 cargo delivery drones.
The operation was conducted under a $1.5 million operational evaluation contract.
Approximately 465 kg of an undisclosed cargo load was placed inside the 26 cu ft fuselage of two GD-2000s for this mission. The gross vehicle weight of each unit was 689 kg, below Silent Arrow’s maximum certified gross weight of 907 kg.
Silent Arrow said two C-130s were deployed for the operation.
In a statement, Silent Arrow said: “The deployment occurred in a desert environment where Silent Arrow demonstrated fully autonomous flight, autonomous waypoint selection and navigation, and during the auto-landing sequence, Silent Arrow’s autonomous autopilot was able to command and achieve soaring zero-sink rates.
According to the contract, 12 Block 1 GD-2000s are currently in service in the Middle East.
Additionally, approximately 15 Block 2 units are in production at Silent Arrow’s center in Irvine, Calif., with delivery expected in the first half of 2022.
To date, nearly 45 Silent Arrow GD-2000 Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) have been developed.
Full-rate production (FRP), which will supply thousands of units, is expected to begin next year.
Silent Arrow Founder and CEO Chip Yates said, “As we prepare for mass production, it’s encouraging to see foreign allied governments so excited about the new capabilities Silent Arrow brings to the warfighter. as were the American military.
“We have distribution agreements in place for 37 countries so far and are working hard to become the global standard in airdrop logistics.”
The Silent Arrow autonomous cargo delivery aircraft were primarily developed as a replacement for the US Marine Corps GPS Directed Parachutes (JPADS).
Eventually, the company secured contracts from all four branches of US military service for Silent Arrow GD-2000, Silent Arrow Widebody, and Silent Arrow Precision Guided Bundle.
Last November, Silent Arrow won a Phase II contract from Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) to supply 15 precision-guided cargo delivery drones to the United States Air Force (USAF).