MIAMI --- Navmar Applied Sciences Corporation (NASC) and UAV Turbines Inc. (UAVT) have announced plans for a joint flight demonstration of NASC's TigerShark aircraft with a UAVT micro-turboprop propulsion system.
First flights are scheduled prior to year-end 2017. This will mark the first time that a Group 3 UAV is powered by a micro-turboprop engine with a new recuperator design that significantly increases engine efficiency.
"Where many major companies have tried and failed, we were pleasantly surprised at the significant engineering milestones achieved by the UAVT team, Technical coordination between our teams and the ability to monitor UAVT's prototypes in operation during the past year, were instrumental in giving us confidence to participate in the flight demonstration program using the TigerShark aircraft," said NASC President, Tom Fenerty.
"This first step is a big one, but as microturbine technology becomes the standard for UAVs, the missions will change and the support provided to our warfighters will be greatly enhanced."
"The benefits of turbines were clear to the air transport industry when turbojets first came into service in 1958, and they quickly dominated the industry," said UAVT President Kirk Warshaw. "The same advantages of high reliability, long life, smooth quiet operation, and the use of safe heavy JP fuel have long made turbine propulsion desirable for UAVs, although no one until now has produced a viable system."
Both Navmar Applied Sciences Corporation and UAV Turbines Inc. are privately held. This joint project is funded by NASC and UAVT outside of any government program or agency affiliation.