Proteus endurance aircraft, 2002

Proteus endurance aircraft, 2002

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Credit: NASA/Tom Tschida/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Proteus endurance aircraft. Scaled Composites Model 281 Proteus tandem-wing high-endurance aircraft in flight over mountains near Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA. Designed by US aerospace company Scaled Composites, Proteus is an 'optionally piloted' aircraft ordinarily flown by two pilots in a pressurized cabin. It also has the capability to perform its missions semi-autonomously or flown remotely from the ground. A high-altitude long-endurance (HALE) aircraft, it can fly at an altitude of 19,800 metres for over 18 hours. It is 17 metres long and has a wingspan of nearly 24 metres. It first flew in 1998. Photographed on 15 March 2002.

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