Schiebel is in talks with the Vietnam People's Navy (VPN) to supply its Camcopter S-100 rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicle, company officials confirmed at the Singapore Airshow.
Andrew Byrne, regional sales director for Asia-Pacific at the Austrian firm, told IHS Jane's that the company had briefed Vietnam about the S-100 and was planning to hold a multinational demonstration of the system's capabilities in the region later in 2014.
"Every southeast Asian country is informed" of the S-100, Byrne said, adding that as well as Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam had shown interest in the platform. Australia and New Zealand were also examining the system, with the latter's navy taking part in a demonstration for New Zealand power company Transpower in September 2013.
If purchased by Vietnam, the S-100 would be deployed from the VPN's two new Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding (DSNS) Sigma-class (Type 9814) corvettes, Byrne said. DSNS said in August 2013 that it had agreed to sell the ships to Vietnam: the second sale of the ship to the region following a previous contract with Indonesia. Byrne added that Schiebel was in discussions with the Dutch shipbuilder about integration of the Camcopter's systems aboard the two corvettes during the manufacturing process.
The S-100 on display at Singapore was fitted with the L-3 Wescam MX-10 EO sensor, an unidentified SIGINT sensor and the Selex ES PicoSAR AESA surveillance radar. Byrne described the S-100 as having a 200 km operational radius, within which the sensor range was 40 km at an altitude of 2,000 m. It is also fitted with a C-band datalink.
An S-200, which Byrne described as being about "three times the size of the S-100", has been designed but a demonstrator has yet to be built, he said.