Silent Arrow® Autonomous Cargo Delivery Drone Delivers 1,026 Pounds of Cargo in the Middle East
LOS ANGELES, January 31, 2022 – The Air Force of a U.S. ally nation in the Middle East has completed the first foreign deployments of the Silent Arrow GD-2000 freight delivery drone under a $1.5 million operational evaluation contract, according to Silent Arrow.
In preparation for the flight operation, 1,026 lbs. (465 kg) of an undisclosed cargo load was secured inside the 26 cubic foot fuselage of two GD-2000s, bringing the gross vehicle weight of each aircraft to 1,520 lbs. (689 kg), below Silent Arrow’s certified max gross of 2,000 lbs. (907 kg).
During the operation, two C-130s were outfitted in line with US military requirements for Container Delivery System (CDS) bundles, and two GD-2000s were used as well. Silent Arrow’s autonomous autopilot was able to order and achieve a zero-sink rate flare during its deployment over a desert environment, demonstrating completely autonomous flying, autonomous waypoint selection and navigation, and a zero-sink rate flare during the auto-landing sequence.
In support of the deal, 12 Block 1 GD-2000s are now stationed in the Middle East, with 15 Block 2 aircraft currently in construction at Silent Arrow’s Irvine, California factory and scheduled to deliver in the first half of 2022. Silent Arrow® GD-2000s have been manufactured in 45 Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) units so far, with Full Rate Production (FRP) in the hundreds expected to begin in 2023.
“As we prepare for mass production, it’s encouraging to see foreign allied governments as enthusiastic about the new capabilities Silent Arrow brings to the warfighter as the U.S. military has been,” said Chip Yates, Silent Arrow’s founder and CEO. “We have distribution agreements in place for 37 countries so far and are working hard to become the worldwide standard for airdrop logistics.”
Originally designed to replace GPS-steered parachutes (JPADS) under contract from the U.S. Marine Corps, the Silent Arrow line of autonomous cargo delivery aircraft has so far expanded to three platforms based on military tactical resupply requirements and has supplied or won contracts directly with all four U.S. military service branches for the following products:
- Silent Arrow GD-2000 (26 cubic feet for up to 1,500 pounds of payload)
- Silent Arrow Widebody (140 cubic feet for greater than 1,500 pounds of payload)
- Silent Arrow Precision Guided Bundle (7.6 cubic feet for 350 pounds of payload)
Silent Arrow’s tightly integrated packaging has become a leading option for non-parachute, big payload airdrop logistics around the world, thanks to its innovative spring-deployed wing system, industry-leading payload capacity, 40+ mile standoff distance, and low unit cost.
Silent Arrow® is a DBA of Yates Electrospace Corporation, founded in 2012 by electric aviation pioneer Chip Yates, to produce the Silent Arrow® and AVIUS Air Delivery™ autonomous cargo drone product lines, which were highlighted as an “Unmanned Cargo Aircraft to Watch” by Aviation Week & Space Technology magazine. Silent Arrow’s engineering team has been awarded more than 20 patents, 6 Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI) aircraft world records, and 2 FAI Louis Bleriot medals for disruptive contributions to the aerospace industry. In 2021 Silent Arrow® was selected as a finalist for the Robert J. Collier Trophy as the “Greatest Achievement in Aeronautics or Astronautics in America.” For more information visit www.Silent-Arrow.com.