Update: AUSA 2019: AeroVironment markets Vapor electric rotary-wing UAV to US Army

by Pat Host

AeroVironment is marketing its Vapor electric rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to potential US Army customers after it secured a contract earlier this year from US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM).

AeroVironment displayed its Vapor 55 model at the 2019 Association of the United States Army (AUSA 2019) conference. Rick Pedigo, company vice-president for business development and sales, told Jane’s on 14 October at the convention that the Vapor – which comes in 35 lb (16 kg) and 55 lb models – features the Pulse Aerospace-developed HeliSynth computer software, which enables the company to optimise the aircraft’s performance. Pulse Aerospace also developed the Vapor UAVs before AeroVironment acquired the company.

The AeroVironment Vapor 55 electric rotary-wing UAV on display at the AUSA 2019 convention. (IHS Markit/Pat Host)

The AeroVironment Vapor 55 electric rotary-wing UAV on display at the AUSA 2019 convention. (IHS Markit/Pat Host)

Featuring three rotor blades, the Vapor 35 can carry a 2.3 kg payload for 60 minutes while the Vapor 55 can carry a 4.5 kg payload for the same duration, Pedigo said. The goal with rotary-wing UAVs, he said, is to carry a payload for the longest time possible. The three-blade rotor design with low revolutions per minute (RPM) provides flight stability and better performance in high wind environments.

USSOCOM awarded AeroVironment its first indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity (ID/IQ) contract in the May–June 2019 time frame to provide the Vapor 35 and 55 models. The company has delivered less than a handful of the Vapor UAV and is under contract to deliver up to 10 units. Pedigo said USSOCOM is experimenting with different types of intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) applications and other payloads, but he declined further specifics to USSOCOM.

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/update-ausa-2019-aerovironment-markets-vapor-electric-rotary-wing-uav-to-us-army

AeroVironment is marketing its Vapor electric rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to potential...

Associated services

Related news

Loading animation

Request a free consultation to find out how in a world of fake news and ever growing conflict, Janes can provide you with unbiased, verified open-source intelligence.

Details