Spanish UAV manufacturer expands regional footprint with Indonesian partner

by Ridzwan Rahmat

The Alpha 900 UAV seen here in BAKAMLA livery at Indo Defence 2022. (Janes/Ridzwan Rahmat)

Madrid-based Alpha Unmanned Systems (AUS) has established a licensed manufacturing partnership with Indonesian company PT Indadi Venyro in a bid to expand the former's footprint across Southeast Asia.

The partnership agreement was established in April 2023 after PT Indadi Venyro agreed to invest in AUS as a minority equity partner, said the companies in a joint statement provided to Janes on 20 April.

Besides licensed manufacturing, the agreement would allow PT Indadi Venyro to provide local maintenance and support for AUS products in the region, the statement added.

AUS has supplied a maritime variant of its Alpha 900 rotor-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to the Indonesian Maritime Security Agency (BAKAMLA).

These UAVs are in operation on the service's largest vessels – the 110 m patrol vessel KN Tanjung Datu (1101), and the 80 m Pulau Nipah-class patrol boat KN Pulau Marore (322).

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UDT 2024: IAI/Aerotor unveil APUS 25 long-range endurance quadcopter

by Kate Tringham

The APUS 25 prototype on display at UDT 2024. (Janes/Kate Tringham)

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) and Aerotor Unmanned Systems have joined forces to develop a novel unmanned quadcopter designed for long-range endurance missions.

The new platform, named APUS 25, was showcased for the first time at the Undersea Defence Technology (UDT) 2024 conference and exhibition, which was held in London from 8 to 10 April.

Speaking to Janes at UDT 2024, an IAI spokesperson said the vehicle incorporates new technology developed by Aerotor that promises greater flight endurance, payload carrying capacity, and manoeuvrability than comparable unmanned quadcopters on the market.

Existing multirotor unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) typically have electric motors for each rotor that enable them to independently change their revolutions per minute (RPMs) for manoeuvres.

The Apus concept developed by Aerotor, however, introduces a new steering method based on a central heavy fuel internal combustion engine that powers the four blades working at a fixed RPM with a variable pitch rotor system.

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Navy League 2024: Bell targets V-280 manned, V-247 unmanned platforms as replacement for USN MH-60R/S helicopters

by Jeremiah Cushman

A V-280 Valor in flight. Bell is modifying the V-280 and pairing it with the V-247 drone to compete for the US Navy's Future Vertical Lift-Maritime Strike programme. (Bell)

The US Navy (USN) is starting to look for its next-generation maritime strike platform. Bell is offering a variant of its V-280 Valor tiltrotor teamed with its V-247 Vigilant unmanned aircraft for the navy's Future Vertical Lift-Maritime Strike (FVL-MS) capability, building off the V-280's selection for the army's Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA) programme.

The selection of the V-280 for the FLRAA programme has increased interest from the other services on the possibilities of the platform for their requirements, Tyler Harrell, manager of Military Sales and Strategy Advanced Systems at Bell, told Janes on 9 April at the Navy League Sea-Air-Space 2024 global maritime exposition in National Harbor, Maryland.

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FIDAE 2024: Brazilian Air Force signs MOU with Embraer to study special mission C-390

by Zach Rosenberg

An artist's conception of the C-390 in a maritime role. (Embraer)

The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) announced a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Embraer on 10 April at the FIDAE 2024 airshow in Santiago, Chile, to study adapting the C-390 transport aircraft for special missions.

Potential uses under study include maritime patrol and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions. The C-390 is primarily a transport and air-to-air tanker aircraft, with no additional variants in service.

Embraer has delivered six C-390 to the FAB, Bosco da Costa Jr, president of Embraer Defense and Security, told Janes at the FIDAE airshow. The service has 13 more on order, according to Janes World Air Forces . Studying the C-390's adaptability would “maximise commonality and technological autonomy”, FAB Commander Lieutenant-Brigadier Marcelo Kanitz Damasceno said in a statement.

Brazil operates a fleet of Lockheed Martin P-3s, Embraer C-95s, Airbus C-295s, and other aircraft types in maritime surveillance roles. The country has an extensive coastline and significant offshore interests.

For more information, please seeEmbraer C-390 Millennium .

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