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UMS Skeldar launches V-150 VTOL UAV

UMS Skeldar launched the V-150 vertical take-off and landing unmanned aerial vehicle (VTOL UAV) on 3 March, with the platform offering a smaller and cheaper option for military operators than the larger V-200 system.

The joint venture between Saab and UMS Aero Group announced the V-150 on 3 March, noting that the US International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR)-free UAV would be aimed at defence forces and other customers.

UMS Skeldar launches V-150 VTOL UAV. (UMS Skeldar)

UMS Skeldar launches V-150 VTOL UAV. (UMS Skeldar)

UMS Skeldar said the V-150 can carry multiple payloads across two payload bays, with up to 30 kg in the main bay and 12 kg in the nose.

The air vehicle offers an endurance of up to 2.5 hours with a 12 kg payload, although the company aims to increase this to 4 hours after ongoing modifications have been completed “in the near future”.

The air vehicle can support an electro optical/infrared (EO/IR) sensor and small tactical synthetic aperture radars (SARs) for maritime operations. For land missions it can hold a combination of EO/IR and signals intelligence sensors.

The impetus for developing the V-150 came from a request from a naval customer for a vehicle with a smaller footprint than the V-200, according to David Willems, vice president of business development and strategy at UMS Skeldar.

Speaking to reporters during the launch, Willems said that while UMS Skeldar had been considering the development of a smaller UAV before this request, it was “the final push to make us decide to launch the project”.

There are several potential military applications for the platform, he added. It could be used as a training platform for the V-200 or future iterations of the larger aircraft.

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