Purpose-built to meet the U.S. Army’s Future Vertical Lift requirements, the Aerosonde® Mk. 4.8 Hybrid Quad (HQ) is runway independent, bringing enhanced flexibility through Hybrid Quadrotor technology to achieve vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL). The Aerosonde® Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) is a proven combat aircraft with over 575,000 hours of mission support in some of the world’s most challenging environments. Building on the platform’s proven performance and benchmark-setting reliability, the Aerosonde® Mk. 4.8 HQ brings unparalleled mission capability and flexibility. Its size, weight and power (SWAP) profile are optimized to execute the aerial reconnaissance missions of the brigade combat team (BCT) while retaining its two-soldier portability.
Textron Systems’ Aerosonde® Mk. 4.8 HQ seamlessly integrates into the pre-established battlespace through utilization of heavy fuel engines, rapid emplacement, two-soldier portability and minimal ground support equipment. This unmanned air system provides improved capabilities with a smaller footprint to support the agility of the Brigade Combat Teams and requires no prepositioned launch and landing equipment. Through a simplified 6-week training course, Textron Systems provides the warfighter with the skills and qualifications needed to fly, maintain, and repair the aircraft in a contested battlespace. Specialized Textron Systems Field Service Representatives (FSRs) remain available at all times to support the warfighter and aircraft across the globe to maintain battlefield preparedness.
Designed with a Modular Open System Architecture (MOSA) approach, the Aerosonde® Mk. 4.8 HQ offers rapid payload integration, improving mission readiness and agility while providing enhanced capabilities to the Maneuver Commander. Expanding beyond improved interoperability, this approach enhances competition, simplifies Technology refresh, incorporates innovation, all while enabling cost savings/cost avoidance. This aircraft proves the validity of this approach with over 35 separate payload integrated and capable of carrying up to six of them at once to include EO/IR Full Motion Video, Signals Intelligence (SIGINT), communications relay, LiDAR and Wide Area Search (WAS). The entire UAS can be assembled and launched in under 30 minutes with the ability to land for fuel, swap payloads and re-launch in a matter of minutes.
The Aerosonde® Mk. 4.8 HQ adapts to the evolving needs of the warfighter. Requiring only two soldiers to carry cases and assemble the aircraft increases the availability of invaluable Brigade Combat Team personnel in complex battlefield. Two-soldier portability also increases the expeditionary capabilities of the BCT, allowing them to quickly and efficiently execute missions. The Aerosonde® Mk. 4.8 HQ UAS is equipped with a heavy-fuel engine powered by JP-8 fuel, which is widely used across the military for both land and air vehicles across all NATO countries. This improves logistics and removes the need to transport additional ground support equipment. The Aerosonde UAS has proven its reliability, with more than a decade of experience and over 575,000 hours on this engine technology in a variety of operating environments.