Ruag Aerospace hopes to have its new Super Ranger UAV ready for its debut flights by early 2008 with manufacture of a prototype planned for the second half of this year.

The new UAV is an outgrowth of the company’s existing Ranger series but with significantly increased payload and 20h endurance, as well as improved signature qualities. Super Ranger development was initiated in 2005 in response to the perceived shift of the tactical military UAV market away from existing platforms in the basic Ranger class.

The design effort has given priority to reduction of life cycle costs as a whole, and to ensure the new airframe would be capable of being certified under the evolving European airworthiness codes for UAVs, including the new Stanag 4671.

The company also wants to expand the performance envelope of the new UAV, as compared to Ranger, in difficult environmental conditions such as icing and electrical storms. This has seen the integration of a pneumatic de-icing system and reinforced propeller, and a lightening strike protection system.
Super Ranger has a span of 9.48m (31ft) and an all up length of 7.11m (22.33ft). It uses a twin boom and pusher propeller configuration with a 4-cylinder 4-stroke, fuel injected engine.

The aircraft will hold 190lt of fuel with a single integrated tank spread between the central fuselage and in-board wing.
The new UAV will loiter at 60-70kt and have a dash speed of 130kt.

Source: Flight Daily News