RQ-7 Shadow (AAI RQ-7 Shadow) UAV Cost, Specs, Review, Manufacturer – The AAI RQ-7 Shadow UAV has made significant contributions to the U.S. military in the wars that ravaged Afghanistan and Iraq.
RQ-7 Shadow (AAI RQ-7 Shadow) UAV Cost, Specs, Review, Manufacturer
|Type||AAI (Textron) RQ-7 Shadow|
|Year of development||2002|
|Development Status||Active, in-service|
|Engine||Powered by a single UEL AR-741 208cc rotary piston engine (38 horsepower), driving a push-pull two-blade propeller unit|
|Top Speed||109 knots (126 mph)|
MiliatryEzyInfo.com – The AAI RQ-7 Shadow is an American tactical reconnaissance drone currently in use by the US Army and Marine Corps.
The system serves as a platform for day and night assessment, target acquisition, surveillance, and battlefield command.
What does the RQ-7 stand for?
The name RQ-7 is derived from the U.S. Department of Defense’s Unmanned Aircraft Designation System.” The “R” stands for reconnaissance and the “Q” stands for the unmanned aerial vehicle.
The number “7” indicates that it is the seventh purpose-designed UAV in the U.S. Army’s family of active UAS.
The AAI RQ-7 Shadow Design
The RQ-7 Shadow, like the previous AAI Pioneer RQ-2 UAV, has extensive experience in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In terms of design, the Shadow has a tall, straight, single-wing attached to the rear of the fuselage. The fuselage has smooth straight surfaces and the fixed landing gear consists of two main wheels and one nosewheel.
The aft tubular boom extends from the trailing edge of each wing to the rear propeller thruster. The tail section ends at a characteristic upward angle.
The heart of the system is an electro-optical/infrared real-time relay camera mounted under the fuselage. The camera is mounted on a gimbal and is digitally stabilized.
Since the shadow drone does not operate on its own, it incorporates components that make up the entire shadow system.
The Shadow system consists of four Shadow drones, a trailer with rail cars, a crew, and two ground stations.
The Shadow derails under the tailhook and returns to the runway. The Shadow can have a lead time of up to an hour in the air.
Dimensions and weight of the RQ-7 Shadow
The RQ-7A is over 11 feet long, with a wingspan of nearly 13 feet and a height of 3 feet. The system weighs about 165 pounds empty, with a maximum payload of 328 pounds.
Engine power of the RQ-7 Shadow
The power source is a single-piston UEL AR-741 engine with a displacement of 208 cc, producing 38 hp. The engine is adjusted by a “plunger” located at the end of the fuselage nacelle.
The ceiling height is reported to be 14,000 feet and the sustained altitude is about 5 hours.
The RQ-7B has been improved over the original production A model in almost every way. The wing has been redesigned with more surface area, a new aerodynamic profile, and a new tail unit.
The fuel tank of the AAI RQ-7 Shadow
This increase in fuel capacity essentially increased the Shadow’s time limit to seven hours (compared to five hours for the first production model).
Production of the RQ-7B began in the summer of 2004.
AAI RQ-7 Shadow Capability
In addition to providing ground commanders with a real-time bird’s eye view of the battlefield, the Shadow can also transport and deliver valuable medical supplies to ground troops via the Quick-Medical Emergency Delivery System (Quick-MEDS).
Two 20-pound tubes can be placed under the wing. A “signal intercept” package is also under development.
Production and Use
More than 550 Shadow drones have been produced and are in operation in the United States (Army, Navy, and Marine Corps), Australia, Italy, Pakistan, Romania, and Sweden. The US Army has over 450 units.