While in Bravo, or working mode, the UAV system exceeds its predecessor’s capabilities in providing twice the range in zero winds and four times the range of flight in 15-knot head winds. Bravo’s design has more than twice the wind penetration, and even in high crosswinds the launch can be successfully accomplished to complete scheduled missions. It is able to carry up to 500 pounds of cargo per flight through all weather and wind situations. The airframe is composed of a lightweight aluminum alloy material, designed to withstand in excess of 10 g shock loading during operations.
In combat service support, the Bravo CQ-10B provides a high endurance, flexible, observation and communications platform, gives force and area protection using cameras, loud speakers, and illumination flares, and can be used as a small unit re-supply. With the system designed to have fewer operations to learn in its use and programming, shorter operator training can be easily accomplished in the field. In addition, the Bravo is a key element in an integrated logistics plan when used as a return ferry for heavy drop guided parachute system guidance units.
Bravo is capable of both ground and air launch. It is not dependant on airfields or runways and can be ground launched from a 1,200-foot un-prepped level surface. It can also be air launched from suitable cargo airplanes (C130, C17) at altitudes of up to 25,000 feet. Full autonomous flight is complimented with remote monitoring and flight control from the ground control station, which is line of sight, and beyond line of sight SATCOM capable.
TFOT has covered several military applications of the unmanned aerial vehicle, including stories on the Hummingbird UAV, the autonomously flown Navy Stealth UAV, and a gasoline powered vehicle small enough to fit in a soldier’s backpack, dubbed the Flying Beer Keg.