The Orkney-based Sustainable Aviation Test Environment (SATE) will use the ARC Aerosystems C600, one of the largest civilian UAVs in the world with payload up to 100kg, in its second phase of testing.
UK technology startup ARC Aerosystems has successfully designed, built and tested prototypes for its C150 and C600 models with partner organisations to develop a more sustainable aviation sector.
The focus is on a hybrid concept powered by electric engines that combines the practicality and functionality of helicopter travel with the speed and efficiency of planes. VTOL aircraft do not need lengthy runways to get off the ground.
The ARC C600 is able to carry heavier payloads and has also completed the 100% scale transition test stages. The ARC C600 will now go on to be part of the second phase of SATE, the UK’s first low-carbon aviation test centre embedded at a commercial airport.
Based at Kirkwall Airport in the Orkney Islands, SATE is a consortium of industry partners, public sector bodies and academics working to apply state-of-the-art aviation technology.
ARC is collaborating with leading aerospace companies to test technologies to reduce the environmental impact of aviation, including electric propulsion systems. The C600 will now be based at Kirkwall, to take part in Visual Line of Site (VLoS) testing.
ARC CEO Seyed Mohseni said: “The C600 is one of the largest civilian UAVs in the world, capable of carrying payloads of up to 100kg across long distances, all without the need for airports due to its VTOL capabilities. Our goal is to help reduce the environmental impact of aviation.”
Last year, ARC Aerosystems received £6 million from a combination of investments including an overseas investor and British Business Bank, which it invested by expanding the team and further developing and testing various size prototypes.
With the help of further investment its team of engineers are ready to embark on the next stages of testing and certification to bring the ARC C150 and ARC C600 crafts to the wider world, alongside its new model, the LINX P9 passenger craft.