AeroVironment Hits Global Observer Testing Milestone

Monrovia-based AeroVironment said today that the firm's Global Observer, unmanned aircraft systems, has completed wing load testing at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center. The firm said the successful completion is a "key milestone" in development and testing of its unmanned aircraft system. Global Observer is being funded by six U.S. government agencies, which have funded the program with more than $120M. Aerovironment said the system provides persistent communications and surveillance over any location, without latitude restrictions. The aircraft flies at an altitude of between 55,000 and 65,000 feet for five to seven days, and is designed to handle communications relay, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance.