Lockheed Martin Stalker VXE UAS completes record 39-hour flight

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Sky Power Int’l expands Wankel engine portfolio

May 20, 2022

Photo credit: Lockheed Martin

A specially configured Lockheed Martin Stalker VXE unmanned aerial system (UAS) completed a world-record endurance flight at the Santa Margarita Ranch in California.

Establishing a new record in the Group 2 (5kg to <25kg) category with a flight time of 39 hours, 17 minutes, and 7 seconds, the flight has been submitted for certification to the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI), the world sanctioning body for aviation records, through its U.S. affiliate, the National Aeronautic Association.

A production Stalker VXE was modified with an external, wing-mounted fuel tank.

To achieve this world record flight time, Lockheed Martin partnered with:

  • Edge Autonomy as a developer and original equipment manufacturer of high-performance unmanned systems, including the Stalker VXE aircraft
  • Adaptive Energy to develop cutting-edge fuel cell technology, investing in advanced power sources and testing innovative implementation techniques for field operations
  • Composite Technology Development Inc. to build a light-weight external wing tank
  • Precision Integrated Programs to provide flight operations support
  • Clovis Area Modelers to provide FAI official contest directors to continuously monitor and adjudicate the world record flight for ratification.

Sky Power Int’l expands Wankel engine portfolio

In addition to the 180cm3 SP-180 SRE Wankel engine previously offered, German unmanned aerial system (UAS) engine manufacturer Sky Power Int’l now offers two more powerful multi-rotor Wankel engines, the SP-360 DRE and the SP-540 TRE, with displacements of 360cm3 and 540cm3, respectively. The SP-360 TRE twin-disc Wankel engine offers up to 51hp at 6,000rpm. The SP-540 TRE three-disc Wankel engine produces 74hp at 6,000rpm. The weight, without additional modules, is 15.5kg and 21kg respectively. Both engines are equipped with two independent cooling systems.