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Paris Air Show 2023: Space Entertainment Laboratory demonstrates seaplane UAVs to Japanese MoD

A model of the Space Entertainment Laboratory Hamadori 6000 seaplane UAV displayed at the Paris Air Show 2023. (Janes/Sam Wise)

Space Entertainment Laboratory (SEL) has demonstrated its seaplane unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) Hamadori 6000 and Hamadori Concept to the Japanese Ministry of Defense (MoD).

Speaking to Janes at the Paris Air Show 2023, held from 19 to 25 June, SEL research and development lead Takenori Hashimoto revealed that from 24 to 26 May 2023 it had performed demo flights of its Hamadori 6000 UAV for the Japanese MoD as well as discussed its larger Hamadori Concept UAV. It has been in discussions with the MoD and the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) about the UAVs for over a year.

The JMSDF's interest in the type is mainly in underwater scanning and minesweeping. SEL's main intended role for the Hamadori family is connecting sea surface, underwater, and air assets, including USVs and military submarines. By flying both above the water and landing on the surface, it is able to autonomously communicate with underwater vehicles with acoustic transmission and act as a relay point between underwater and surface or air vehicles.

The piston-engined Hamadori 6000 can carry a 10 kg (22 lb) payload (internal or external) while the turboprop-powered Hamadori Concept can carry a 300 kg (661 lb) external payload. Other roles for the types demonstrated to Janes at Paris Air Show 2023 include rescue, cargo transport, surveillance, observation, and kamikaze attack.

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