drone startup WingXpandFledgling company’s drone combines best aspects of multi-rotor and fixed-wing craft

By Jim Magill

Commercial and military customers looking for a drone solution that combines the portability of a multi-rotor copter drone with the heavy-lift capability and long-range flight time of a fixed-wing aircraft might have found the answer they’re looking for with a new UAV built by drone startup WingXpand.

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When disassembled, the aircraft, which the company bills as the world’s only expandable-wing drone, weighs about 10 pounds and can be carried in a backpack. It can be assembled onsite in under two minutes into a plane-like vehicle with a 7-foot wingspan that can fly up to five times longer and can carry 10 times more weight than conventional quadcopters.

Co-founded by Michelle Madaras and CEO James Barbieri, St. Louis-based WingXpand debuted its signature aircraft at the AUVSI Xponential event in April. The company hopes to make its…


Source: dronelife.com