As the unmanned aircraft (UA) lifted off from the ship’s helideck it immediately pitched up and transited rearwards with insufficient height to clear the 19-cm high gunwale about 2 m behind it. The impact damaged the UA tail structure, leading to a failure of the tail rotor transmission and resulting in the UA spiralling into the sea alongside the ship.
Following an investigation by the manufacturer software changes have been made to reduce operator workload during the takeoff.
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