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Kawasaki KAQ-1 drone

2 March 2012

Kawasaki KAQ-1 drone

37º 21′ 57″ N / 120º 34′ 44″ W

Training fighter pilots to intercept an aircraft and launch missiles, or giving a live target for anti-aircraft gunners, has involved drones since the 1950s once radio control became sufficiently reliable. So, it was in the 1950s that Kawasaki built and sold the KAQ-1 drone powered by the McCullough 72 hp (54kW) four cylinder, air cooled, horizontally opposed engine. This drone could blaze across the sky as fast as 220 mph (350kph) for up to 250 miles (400km) if need be.

Kawasaki KAQ-1 drone at the Castle Air Museum — photo by Joseph May

A closer view of the McCullough engine which could separate and land under parachute canopy should the drone successfully be destroyed — photo by Joseph May

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