Military Embedded Systems

MQ-9B SkyGuardian wing structure completes Full-Scale Static testing


December 10, 2020

Emma Helfrich

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

GA-ASI photo.

POWAY, Calif. General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) recently completed Full Scale Static (FSS) testing on the MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) wing after three months of extensive testing. MQ-9B includes SkyGuardian and SeaGuardian RPA produced by GA-ASI.

According to the company, the testing included multiple load cases to 150 percent of expected maximum flight loads. The wing was loaded using specially designed fixtures to apply a distributed load across the wingspan, simulating gust and maneuver flight conditions.

GA-ASI claims that this particular wing design is the culmination of a large development effort from multiple areas within GA-ASI and represents a milestone in qualifying the MQ-9B SkyGuardian and SeaGuardian RPA to fly in non-segregated airspace.

The wing test was also intended to establishe the baseline wing design for the entire MQ-9B product line. The company asserts that this is critical as GA-ASI starts deliveries to multiple customers pursuing the MQ-9B including the United Kingdom, Belgium, and Australia.