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Remotely Piloted Vehicles

NEWS
May 9, 2001 | From Times Wire Reports
In the search for a heavenly cup of coffee, NASA will send an unmanned solar-powered aircraft soaring above a Hawaiian plantation so growers know exactly when to pick the beans for the most flavorful brew. The craft will take color images of the crops and give precise information, down to the day, on when to harvest, which could be a key to producing excellent coffee, NASA said in a statement.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 19, 2001 | MATTHEW EBNET and MARTHA L. WILLMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
When Mike Reedy looks back over the years, he says his professional and personal life truly began in 1972, when he was 30 years old, in an old parking lot in Garden Grove. He stood there, fascinated, as his friends raced radio-controlled cars as if nothing else mattered in the world. That day, and the hobby, drew him in like nothing he'd ever experienced, he says. He's lived in a toy-car world ever since.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 16, 2001 | MARTHA L. WILLMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The engines will roar again this week from a back lot in a dusty corner of Saugus. No, it's not a revival of the Saugus Speedway, but the roar of tiny engines of radio-controlled cars. The "drivers" of so-called R/C vehicles will be competing in one of the most prestigious events of their class in the nation--the 16th annual Reedy Invitational--honoring R/C pioneer Mike Reedy of Costa Mesa.
NEWS
May 14, 2000 | PAUL RICHTER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
From the moment they climbed into the first cockpits nearly a century ago, military pilots have been the daring heroes of air warfare. But inside a St. Louis aerospace plant called the Phantom Works, engineers are assembling the prototype of an aircraft that could revolutionize air-to-ground combat--and eventually displace the pilots who conduct it. The new Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle is a 26-foot-long, blunt-nosed plane that looks something like a horseshoe crab with wings.
NEWS
April 22, 2000 | From Associated Press
The Air Force's newest spy plane landed here Friday on its first deployment from its home base in California--but no pilot got out of the cockpit. The $25-million Global Hawk, still in the demonstration phase, does not even have a cockpit. It's an unmanned aerial vehicle, or UAV, that can fly on its own for up to 35 hours as high as 65,000 feet. Its missions will be those that are too "dull, dirty and dangerous" to risk a pilot, said Col. Craig R.
BUSINESS
June 26, 1999 | MICHAEL P. LUCAS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A camera-toting miniature helicopter darts out from under a railroad trestle over the Los Angeles River and trains the lens on Beverly Free. The television commercial producer sees a bird's-eye view of herself on a video monitor--and is impressed. Remote-controlled helicopters can fly where humans wouldn't dare, and that means business for both Coptervision of Van Nuys and Flying-Cam Inc. of Santa Monica.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 30, 1999 | ANDREW BLANKSTEIN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
An unmanned reconnaissance aircraft being developed for the U.S. military crashed Monday morning in the Mojave Desert during a routine test flight, a U.S. Air Force spokeswoman said. No one was hurt in the accident, which destroyed the Global Hawk aircraft at 10:14 a.m. on the grounds of the China Lake Naval Air Station, 120 miles north of downtown Los Angeles, said the spokeswoman, Lt. Col. Vicki Stein. "The aircraft had been flying about 20 minutes before it crashed," Stein said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 16, 1998 | DAVID COLKER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The early development of Centurion--NASA's super-light, solar-powered airplane that makes its public debut Thursday--sounds like the plot line of an "X-Files" episode. In the early 1980s, an aviation company located in a Simi Valley industrial park got a government contract to design and build a pilotless aircraft with a wingspan nearly the length of a football field.
BUSINESS
August 22, 1998 | LEE DYE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
The little guy won. A 29-pound unmanned aircraft landed in a pasture in Scotland on Friday morning, becoming the first autonomous plane to cross the Atlantic. With a wingspan of only 10 feet, it took the small plane, called an Aerosonde, 26 hours to complete the historic flight. It burned less than two gallons of fuel. "We proved our point," said Juris Vagners, professor of aeronautics and astronautics at the University of Washington, a major participant in the project.
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