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AUSA 2017: Redkite-I soars to final testing

11th October 2017 - 09:10 GMT | by Grant Turnbull in Washington DC


A new wide-area sensor payload developed for Insitu’s Integrator UAS is expected to complete final testing this year, paving the way for operators to begin fielding the system.

Logos Technologies new Redkite-I product – an evolution of the lightweight podded Redkite – offers wide-area motion imagery for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions.

The sensor payload can provide a 1km diameter coverage area while the Integrator flies at 3,000ft. That is increased to a 4km diameter area if the UAS flies at 12,000ft.

Alan Murdoch, vice president of international programmes at Logos Technologies, told Shephard that final testing would take place at the end of the year. He added that this testing would ensure that the Redkite is a ‘fully vetted’ product for the Integrator.

Murdoch added that the company was also ‘developing a relationship’ with General Atomics and reconfiguring the Redkite payload for integration on the Predator XP platform.

The Redkite features compact embedded processing that includes north-up rendering, real-time and DVR streaming. The payload also features an internal datalink to pass video data through to operators and ground forces that use handheld devices.

These operators can access up to ten windows that display video and imagery of geographically dispersed area simultaneously, the company said. Users can also set up so-called ‘watchboxes’ that automatically monitor specific areas of interest and automatically alert operators when movement is detected.

Data from the Redkite sensor can be used to slew an EO/IR sensor turret for more detailed ISR gathering of a specific area.

Redkite is also available in a podded configuration that can be fitted to manned fixed-wing aircraft, UAS and helicopters.

Murdoch told Shephard that Logos Technologies is developing a night version of the payload called Blackkite. A day/night wide-area sensor payload is also in development known as Greykite.

The company has also developed a wide-area sensor capability for aerostats known as Kestrel Block II. This 40kg payload is capable of covering 113 sq km at 3,000ft, with eight cameras composing a 440 Mpx day/night mosaic.



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