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Old 11-13-2020, 10:47 AM
Join Date: May 2007
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 57
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts

Originally Posted by pdouglas View Post

I am interested in developing an RC jet that's fully autonomous (from takeoff to landing) and capable of maintaining a cruising speed of 480 miles per hour to a distance greater than 50 miles. The jet should be in full compliance with any FAA regulations regarding airworthiness and it should be fashioned with a transponder that can squawk mode c to flight control towers. I would like the jet to have outstanding video capability and FPV from the cockpit area even at distance.

As far as perimeters go, I would like the jet to be no more than 10 feet in length with a wingspan that's proportionate.

My questions are:
1. Will the FAA allow me to file a flight plan and fly the aircraft accordingly?
2. Can the jet be designed for a budget of $20,000 or less?
3. Would a jet with this type of capacity have a resell value that would exceed the cost to assemble it?

As said above:

1- I think this is the most important question, and I'm glad you're here to ask before trying. If you intend to register this as a turbine driven model in the US, you're bound to a max speed of 200mph. Beyond that, you're not permitted to fly out of line of sight with any model. An airplane flying 450mph will do 1 mile every 8 seconds. Trying to follow this in the sky will be extremely challenging. You'll also need to become a waivered turbine pilot to operate this thing. Recently, model aviation has struggled in a battle against the FAA due to the growing popularity of drones. Every accident that occurs, every time one flies too close to the airport, any calamity of any sort means tightened restrictions for us. If you have an accident with this thing, the RC flying community with bear the brunt of the circumstances. If you decide to proceed, please follow all of the rules that we abide by as modelers.

2- No way. Besides the cost, how long would you expect this project to take? Are you the only one working on it? There are a few scratch build threads on these forums that have been in the works for several years!

3- No chance. Models generally sell for ~60% the retail cost. At the end of the day, you're making a toy. Nobody NEEDS a 450mph UAV.
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