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SUV manufacturer uses in-car SatNav to guide Lockheed Hercules on French flight


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By Justin Wastnage in London


UK automotive company Land Rover has released a commercial in the USA showing a Lockheed L-100 Commercial Hercules navigated by the car's satellite navigation (SatNav) system on an domestic French flight.


The North American division of the company chartered the aircraft (EI-JIV) from Air Contractors on 6 April to fly from Nice Côtes-d'Azur airport to Ajaccio Campo Dell'Oro airport on the southern coast of the French island of Corsica. The Mediterranean Sea lies between the two points.


A Range Rover LR3 V8 HSE sports utility vehicle was secured in the cargo hold and the pilot communicated with an engineer seated in the car. The aircraft was then navigated through French air space using the four-wheel drive car's Denso Wireless SatNav system, which uses Global Positioning Satellite.


Range Rover says the mission passed without incident and the aircraft landed with cargo intact.


Roy Carroll, the aircraft's pilot says he was "dubious" when the stunt was first proposed. David Saddington, chief designer of the LR3 says the mission was proposed in order to test the capabilities of the system, which is designed for "off-the-map" navigation.


The Denso system was developed for speeds in the range of 300km/h, whereas the Hercules approached speeds to 260-340kt (480-630km/h) during the 230km (124nm) flight. The flight was restricted to an altitude of 9,000ft (2,730m) for the flight due to the system's design.


Link: Visit the commercial home page of the Nice to Ajaccio Hercules flight using a Range Rover in-car satellite navigation system to watch the 30sec advertisement spot and the three minute documentary explaining the sortie.



Fonte: Flight International

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