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Wed, Jul 09, 2008

Dassault Completes First Fully Autonomous Flight Of AVE-D Drone

UAV Flight Witnessed By French Military Officials

The Dassault Aviation AVE-D drone completed its first fully autonomous demonstration flight on June 30 near Toul, France. The flight, watched by representatives of France's Delegation Generale pour l'Armement (DGA) armaments procurement agency, comprised a completely automated sequence: roll from parking spot, runway alignment, takeoff, in-flight maneuvers, landing, braking and rolling back to the parking apron.

This AVE-D flight marks a significant first for Dassault Aviation, confirming the company's expertise in Uninhabited Air Vehicles, or drones. The demonstration flight is a key development milestone for a technology essential to the successful pursuit of the European nEUROn Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle Demonstrator program.

The AVE (Aeronefs de Validation Experimentale) series is a family of scale model experimental unmanned aircraft developed by Dassault Aviation. These aircraft enable Dassault Aviation to carry out flight validation tests of technological advances in the field of Uninhabited Air Vehicles, or UAVs, including stealth and autonomous flight.

Achieving maximum stealth is a decisive factor for the success of observation or attack missions in a hostile combat environment. The first AVE aircraft -- called AVE-D, for "discretion" -- made its maiden flight in July 2000, becoming the first stealth drone to fly in Europe.

FMI: www.dassault-aviation.com

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