First Flight Of Unmanned Fighter ‘Valkyrie’ Surfaces

First Flight Of Unmanned Fighter ‘Valkyrie’ Surfaces | Frontline Videos

Weapons Of The World / YouTube


On March 5th, 2019, the United States Air Force tested their newest drone, the XQ-58A Valkyrie, over the Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona. The aircraft is the Air Force Research Laboratory’s LCAAT (low-cost attritable aircraft technology) demonstrator, the branch’s program aimed to expedite building and procurement of efficient aircraft while saving tax dollars.

XQ-58A Valkyrie

The concept of this project is to provide human pilots with “loyal wingmen.” When going into enemy territory and faced with either ground or air adversaries, these autonomous aircraft would scout ahead of their human counterparts to look for threats, relay information and even absorb enemy fire when necessary. 

The drone is built by a San Diego defense and security company called Kratos. Although the Valkyrie is yet to be proven and accepted by any branch of the military, their other product, the AN/SEQ-3 Laser Weapon System, was already a hit and is being tested with the United States Navy with great effect.

ARABIAN GULF (Nov. 15, 2014) The Afloat Forward Staging Base (Interim) USS Ponce (ASB(I) 15) conducts an operational demonstration of the Office of Naval Research (ONR)-sponsored Laser Weapon System (LaWS) while deployed to the Arabian Gulf. (U.S. Navy photo by John F. Williams/Released)

As for the XQ-58A, here are its specifications the public is allowed to know about:

General characteristics

  • Crew: 0
  • Length: 28 ft 10 in (8.8 m)
  • Wingspan: 22 ft 0 in (6.7 m)


  • Maximum speed: 567 kn (652 mph; 1,050 km/h)
  • Maximum speed: Mach 0.85
  • Range: 2,128 nmi (2,449 mi; 3,941 km)
  • Service ceiling: 44,997 ft (13,715 m)


  • Hardpoints: 8 – 2 weapon bays with 4 in each with a capacity of 550 lb (250 kg) each,
  • Bombs: JDAM, Small diameter bomb

We’ve provided the first official test flight of the drone below. It was uploaded by the Air Force Research Lab to YouTube.


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