AeroVironment has undertaken a number of upgrades to its Puma and Raven unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), including strengthening the Puma’s airframe, updating the datalink, adding new avionics, and integrating a new infrared (IR) sensor.
Puma, which will now be designated the Puma 3 AE , has received structural upgrades to the fuselage and centre wing to enable the UAV to carry several more pounds' payload, David Sharpin, vice-president of AeroVironment's Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System, told Jane’s on 9 October at the annual Association of the US Army (AUSA) symposium in Washington.
The heavier payload includes a new Mantis i45 sensor package that weighs 850 gm and will carry five sensors: two electro-optical cameras, two IR cameras, a low-light camera for dusk operations, and a laser marker.
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