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Air Platforms

FLIR Systems adds Black Hornet 3 to its PRS family of micro UAVs

11 June 2018
Pictured here is FLIR System's Black Hornet Nano UAV. The company announced the release of the Black Hornet 3 that adds the ability to navigate in GPS-denied environments. Source: FLIR Systems

FLIR Systems is offering a new version of its Black Hornet Personal Reconnaissance System (PRS) that enables the Nano Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (NUAV) the ability to navigate in GPS-denied environments.

The Black Hornet 3 is a new UAV, completely designed from scratch compared with earlier Black Hornet models, Ole Aguirre, director of UAS strategy and government affairs for FLIR Systems, Inc, told Jane’s .

The main improvements are the enhanced robustness of the UAV and its modular design (field replaceable batteries and replaceable camera modules), a new 256 Advanced Encryption Standard encrypted digital data link that extends its range both Line of Sight (LoS) and Beyond LoS, improved day and night cameras, longer endurance per flight, higher speed and range that allows for more time on target, compatibility to the Android Team Awareness Kit and other battle management systems, a new rotor design, along with other incremental changes.

“In addition, the Black Hornet family is built for modularity and extended user scenarios, and with an introduction of the Vehicle Reconnaissance System (VRS) system we are bringing the Black Hornet capability to mounted troops,” Aguirre said.

The Black Hornet 3 NUAVs are activated while inside the base station, and then released by hand after a short start-up sequence. The NUAV is controlled by simple button commands, and provides the operator with stabilised video and snapshots from electro-optical and thermal imaging cameras.

“Advanced navigation and guidance provides both automatic and manual flight modes, even when flown indoors. Missions may be preplanned or executed ad-hoc without any preparation,” Aguirre noted. “Mission endurance is typically 20-25 minutes, and datalink range is more than 2 km LoS. The datalink also provides a significant non-LoS capability (such as through obstacles).

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