- UMS Skeldar has introduced a ViDAR-equipped variant of the V-200 unmanned aerial vehicle
- The variant is being positioned as a persistent maritime surveillance system that requires minimal intervention
UMS Skeldar is showcasing a variant of its V-200 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that has been configured to carry a Visual Detection and Ranging (ViDAR) sensor payload at the Pacific 2019 international maritime exposition.
It is the first time that the variant is being showcased to the public, said David Willems, vice-president of business development and strategy at the company, in an interview with Jane's at the exposition. The variant has been designated at the V-200 Block 20.
The V-200 Block 20 has also been optimised for the maritime environment and features several improvements over the previous version, the V-200B. These include an airframe that is about 10 kg lighter, improved avionics, and more ruggedised features to withstand conditions at sea, said Willems.
However, the most important improvement is the type of sensor payload it offers, Willems added. "Especially for customers in Southeast Asia, where we have challenges with maritime crime and piracy, the ViDAR sensor is a much better equipment for monitoring vast maritime areas over conventional electro-optical and infra-red (EO/IR) sensors," he said.
Besides an eight-camera ViDAR payload that can monitor targets as far as 20 n miles in each direction, the V-200 Block 20 can also be equipped with phased array antennas to convey data and visuals in real time to its ship-based operator.
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