All articles by Liam Stoker

Liam Stoker

May’s top stories: WaveRider and X-47B successes

Experimental US Air Force programmes made steady progress, with the X-51A hypersonic WaveRider jet successfully completing a test flight and the X-47B drone launching from the USS George H W Bush. wraps up the key headlines from May 2013.

Video feature: nano-air vehicles – small eyes in the skies

Floating like a butterfly and able to sting like a bee, DARPA’s request for insect-sized UAVs capable of tracking high-profile targets in densely populated areas finally looks like it is taking off.

Video feature: A400M finally on the runway

Despite a series of setbacks and controversies, Airbus’s A400M airlifter finally looks like delivering on its initial premise, as deliveries and operational certification edges closer.

April’s top stories: US inks Israeli arms deal, UK commences drone ops

The US and Israel announced a multibillion-dollar arms deal to maintain Israel’s air superiority, while the UK adopted control of its drone operations from a new control centre at RAF Waddington. wraps up the key headlines from April 2013.

Video feature: quadrotor claws, or grasping at straws?

University of Pennsylvania scientists believe they may have developed the next emerging technology for Micro UAVs with their eagle-like grasping claw. Promising to enable UAVs to retrieve items, as well as perch, does this technology have legs?

March’s top stories: F-35 flights cleared as Iraq weapons due

Flight tests aboard Lockheed Martin’s F-35 aircraft were cleared to restart, having been grounded, while Iraq confirmed an eagerly anticipated arms deal with Russia was not cancelled after all. wraps up key headlines from March 2013.

An appetite for surveillance creates enthusiasm for HALE UAVs

Capable of soaring at high altitudes for days on end, high altitude long endurance (HALE) UAVs have emerged to an enthusiastic reception given their vaunted surveillance capabilities. Tentative progress has been made through several demonstrator programmes, but could existing technology be repurposed for the same end?

February’s top stories: North Korea nuclear tests and F-22 upgrades

North Korea continued to defy the world’s wishes and conducted a further nuclear test, while the USAF sanctioned upgrades to its troubled F-22 fighters. wraps up February’s key headlines.

January’s top stories: Iron Dome upgraded as USAF CRH programme advances

Bidding troubles will not hold back the US Air Force’s combat rescue helicopter programme, while Israel validated enhancements to its Iron Dome missile defence system. wraps up the key headlines from January 2013.

Video feature: X-37 – space weapon or spy?

As mysterious as it is controversial, the US Air Force’s X-37 has captivated everyone from amateur astronomers to international governments. Following a third launch, Liam Stoker investigates some of the theories surrounding the spacecraft.