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Unmanned airships find new roles

airshipA military contractor will use a $1 million SkySat unmanned airship built by Sanswire Corp. of Aventura, Fla, for defense communications.

Sanswire officials said Global Telesat Corp. will purchase a 50 percent interest in one SkySat airship for $250,000, with an option to purchase the remaining 50 percent for an additional $750,000.

SkySat is Sanswire’s mid-altitude, lighter-than-air, UAV platform. The airship was initially designed for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions performed at altitudes up to 45,000 feet. Sanswire and Global Telesat intend to upgrade the airship to improve its viability for multipurpose defense and communications operations.

Alton Marsh
Alton K. Marsh
Freelance journalist
Alton K. Marsh is a former senior editor of AOPA Pilot and is now a freelance journalist specializing in aviation topics.

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