Beyond line of sight [CANSEC17D1]

31 May 2017

Lockheed Martin (Booth 1311), in partnership with Canadian UAVs, has completed the first beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) pipeline and well assets inspection using the Lockheed Martin Procerus Technologies’ Indago 2 unmanned aerial system (UAS).

The inspection was completed at the Foremost Centre for Unmanned Systems, Alberta, and is the result of more than eight years of planning and co-ordination between the Village of Foremost, Transport Canada and NAV Canada, a private, non-share capital corporation that owns and operates Canada’s civil air navigation service.

Indago 2 is a multiple payload-capable quadcopter, with a ready-to-fly weight, including ‘hot-switchable’ payload, of 2.27kg (5lb).

Requiring no assembly prior to ight, Indago 2 has an endurance of approximately 45 minutes, and can achieve ranges of up to 5km (3.1 miles) when operated using its handheld controller; the range can be extended beyond 10km with directional communications devices.

Indago 2 is one of few unmanned systems deemed Transport Canada compliant, meaning that Indago operators are approved for routine access to Canadian airspace.

“Our systems routinely fly beyond line of sight for our military customers, which has allowed us to gain compliance status with Transport Canada for use in commercial airspace,” said John Molberg, business development lead for Lockheed Martin CDL Systems. “ is flight achievement is a bellwether for Canadian UAVs, Lockheed Martin and Foremost Test Range, and showcases the leadership provided by Unmanned Systems Canada and Transport Canada for the safe use of unmanned systems in Canadian airspace.”

In tandem with the UAS platform, the Indago system includes a lightweight, weather-resistant, wireless hand controller, which provides an easy-to-use interface for untethered UAS operations. Weighing 1.6kg, and with a run time of four hours, the hand controller can be used for small UAS operations, whether fixed-wing or vertical take-o and landing (VTOL), to provide onboard video recording and high-resolution still images.

During the BVLOS inspection at the CCUVS, the Indago 2 was equipped with a 30x optical zoom and enhanced digital zoom payload. Featuring a three-axis mechanical and inner stage electronic image stabilisation with global shutter, the optical payload can achieve a 1.5° field-of-view full zoom, with a facial recognition capability from stand-o ranges of in excess of 230m.

Indago’s high-quality real-time airborne imaging capabilities include Lockheed Martin’s new Hydra Fusion Tools – this provides situational awareness during operations, and is the only system to provide real-time three-dimensional reconstruction during UAS flight. The latest version of Hydra Fusion Tools enables a user to “fuse” various data feeds and monitor them together on a single homogenous display.

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