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BAE Systems speaks about unmanned ASTRAEA: no reason it can't stay in air 'for weeks'

Darren Murph

BAE Systems' ASTRAEA isn't a new concept -- the company's been playing up its unmanned potential for quite some time now -- but it's all seeming entirely less pie-in-the-sky now that the Farnborough Airshow has kicked off. Typically, UAVs are thought to be smaller, drone-type apparatuses; these things are typically used in military exercises where remote gunfire or reconnaissance is required. Clearly, it's about time someone asked the obvious: "Why?" Lambert Dopping-Hepenstal, Engineering Director Systems and Strategy, Military Air and Information at BAE and ASTRAEA Program Director recently spoke at the aforesaid event, noting that this particular aircraft could "open up a new market." He continued: "Current search and rescue aircraft are limited by human endurance, however with a UAV there's no reason why they can't stay up for weeks." Sadly, he also affirmed that there aren't any plans to ship actual humans up in the air without a pilot onboard, but if you're rich and mettlesome enough to pull it off yourself... well, be sure to send us the video. Also, Godspeed.

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