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Lockheed MQM-105 Aquila TADAR

Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)

Lockheed MQM-105 Aquila TADAR

Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



Despite it never seeing production, just under 1 billion USD was spent on developing the Lockheed Aquila UAV.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: United States
YEAR: 1982
STATUS: Retired, Out-of-Service
MANUFACTURER(S): Lockheed Missiles and Space Company - USA
PRODUCTION: 1
OPERATORS: United States (retired)
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Lockheed MQM-105 Aquila TADAR model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: None
LENGTH: 6.82 feet (2.08 meters)
WIDTH: 12.73 feet (3.88 meters)
HEIGHT: 3.28 feet (1 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 265 pounds (120 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 441 pounds (200 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Herbrandson Dyad 280B 2-stroke piston engine developing 24 horsepower.
SPEED (MAX): 130 miles-per-hour (210 kilometers-per-hour; 113 knots)
RANGE: 249 miles (400 kilometers; 216 nautical miles)
CEILING: 14,764 feet (4,500 meters; 2.80 miles)




ARMAMENT



None.
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• XMQM-105A - Prototye Designation
• YMQM-105A - Developmental Model
• MQM-105 "Aquila" - Proposed Production Model Designation
• "Altair" - Proposed Export Sales Model


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the Lockheed MQM-105 Aquila TADAR Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).  Entry last updated on 6/11/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The MGM-105 Aquila (Eagle) TADAR (Target Acquisition, Designation and Aerial Reconnaissance) was the first United States Army attempt at securing a reusable Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) capable of conducting a range of mission types. The Aquila was originally developed as "Little R" by Lockheed Missiles and Space Company beginning in the 1970's. Army specifications called for a cost-effective system of small size able to provide the US Army with real-time aerial reconnaissance, target acquisition, artillery observation and laser designation. Unfortunately for the Aquila - and the US Army and Lockheed itself for that matter - the MQM-105 became a bloated and expensive project that never lived up to expectations, forcing the entire development effort to be cancelled.

By 1974, Lockheed and the US Army had partnered for development of the new UAV. In December of 1975, flyable prototypes emerged as the XMQM-105A. By August of 1979, the US Army was fully onboard with the Aquila project and rewarded Lockheed with a contract based on the prototypes. The follow-up developmental model appeared in July of 1982 as the YMQM-105A.

The Aquila design fitted a swept-back wing to a flat fuselage shape housing the UAVs payload and engine. The engine was a Herbrandson Dyad 280B 2-stroke system delivering 24 horsepower to a pusher-type propeller system housed in the rear of the fuselage. On board systems included a fixed daytime TV-camera with an integrated autotracker. A laser designator was also included. A night-vision system utilizing FLIR was planned but never enacted. Communications was provided for via a datalink and video downlink. Performance from the piston engine allowed a top speed of 130 miles per hour with a service ceiling of 14,800 feet and an in-flight time of 3 hours.

Launching was accomplished via a catapult system mounted onto a truck while retreival was via an erected netting to catch the incoming Aquila upon return. Net height was adjustable to protect the vehicle's profile and the Aquila was fitted with infrared sensors that automatically brought led itself into the netting.

As may be expected in such pioneering efforts, the Aquila project met with its own inherent deficiencies. Several Aquilas were lost or damaged in crashes while the cost of the project seemingly ballooned with each passing month to go along with changing mission parameters.

The MGM-105 project was officially cancelled in 1987 despite nearly 1 billion dollars sunk into the project. Some 376 Aquila's were slated to be built. Lockheed was also considering an export version.




MEDIA







General Assessment (BETA)
Firepower  
Performance  
Survivability  
Versatility  
Impact  


Values are derrived from a variety of categories related to the design, overall function, and historical influence of this aircraft in aviation history.
MF Power Rating (BETA)
18
The MF Power Rating takes into account over sixty individual factors related to this aircraft entry. The rating is out of 100 total possible points.
Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 150mph
Lo: 75mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (130mph).

    Graph average of 112.5 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
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  PAR
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  MSK
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  TKY
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  SYD
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  NYC
Graph showcases the Lockheed MQM-105 Aquila TADAR's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
1
1

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue
Commitments / Honors
Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur War
Military lapel ribbon for experimental x-plane aircraft
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.