Blue­bird to sup­ply ad­vanced Spylite miniUAVS to Chile


Blue­Bird Aero Sys­tems — a leader in the de­sign, de­vel­op­ment and pro­duc­tion of mi­cro, mini and small tac­ti­cal UAS and pe­riph­eral equip­ment — an­nounced win­ning a ten­der for the sup­ply of SpyLite mini-UAV sys­tems, for the Chilean Army, sur­pass­ing com­pet­ing sys­tems in both per­for­mance and price lev­els.

The com­pany dis­played the SpyLite Mini-UAS – as well as the mi­cro-B mi­croUAS, a uni­fied ground con­trol sys­tem (UGCS), and a re­mote video ter­mi­nal (RVT) – at LAAD in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

SpyLite is a ma­ture, ad­vanced, com­bat­proven, ex­tended per­for­mance elec­tric Mini-UAS, op­ti­mised to pro­vide covert, “over-the-hill” or ex­tended range real-time vis­ual in­tel­li­gence. SpyLite is unique in its abil­ity to fly even in strong winds and on cloudy or rainy days, as­sur­ing high op­er­a­tional avail­abil­ity for over four hours and a com­mu­ni­ca­tion range of over 50 km. The SpyLite sys­tem can be con­fig­ured to back­packed, ve­hi­cle-mounted or HQ sta­tion­ary con­fig­u­ra­tions.

Fully au­ton­o­mous, from its point of launch to its ac­cu­rate para­chute and airbag re­cov­ery, the sys­tem de­liv­ers au­ton­o­mous ease of use and high re­li­a­bil­ity, pro­vid­ing a very ver­sa­tile and sta­ble ISR plat­form. Com­bin­ing a sta­bilised CCD and IR pay­load with pro­pri­etary ground ex­ploita­tion soft­ware — the SpyLite al­lows for GPS-marked im­agery to be re­layed in real time to the ground sta­tion. This ca­pa­bil­ity de­liv­ers en­hanced sit­u­a­tional aware­ness, con­tribut­ing sub­stan­tially to the suc­cess of the mis­sion.

The SpyLite sys­tem presents an ul­ti­mate so­lu­tion for sup­port­ing real time video or tac­ti­cal map­ping on de­mand for open area as well as ur­ban war­fare sce­nar­ios for mil­i­tary, peace­keep­ing, low in­ten­sity con­flict, se­cu­rity, disas­ter man­age­ment and com­mer­cial ap­pli­ca­tions.

The SpyLite sys­tem has ac­cu­mu­lated thou­sands of op­er­a­tional flight hours in the ser­vice of sev­eral in­ter­na­tional cus­tomers, and has been in op­er­a­tional use by the Is­raeli Min­istry of De­fense since 2006. 21A. The nearly two-hour flight launched from the USS Mesa Verde (LPD 19) af­ter three months of land-based de­vel­op­ment test­ing and op­er­a­tional as­sess­ment.

“In­situ is ex­tremely proud of the part­ner­ship we have with Naval Air Sys­tems Com­mand,” said In­situ Se­nior Vice Pres­i­dent of In­te­gra­tor Pro­grammes Ryan Hart­man. “We see this mile­stone as con­fir­ma­tion of our govern­ment-in­dus­try team’s com­mit­ment to de­liv­er­ing the first ex­pe­di­tionary, mul­ti­in­tel­li­gence UAS in this class to the Navy and Marine Corps.”

RQ-21A is an ex­pe­di­tionary, no-run­way so­lu­tion that sup­ports mis­sions afloat and ashore and has demon­strated rapid pay­load in­te­gra­tion to help com­man­ders quickly adapt to emerg­ing threats.

Naval Air Sys­tems Com­mand (NAVAIR) awarded the STUAS pro­gramme to In­situ for its In­te­gra­tor UAS in July 2010 to pro­vide per­sis­tent mar­itime and land-based tac­ti­cal in­tel­li­gence, sur­veil­lance and re­con­nais­sance data col­lec­tion and dis­sem­i­na­tion ca­pa­bil­i­ties. The In­te­gra­tor UAS de­sign served as the base­line for the RQ-21A UAS de­sign.

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