CUV announces STMPAS aerial system delivery
Carolina Unmanned Vehicles CUV has announced that it has delivered its Lightweight Aerostat System (LAS) for the Small Tactical Multi-Payload Aerostat System (STMPAS) to the US Army Rapid Equipping Force (REF). The company made the announcement in a statement on 14 May, 2012.
STMPAS combines LAS hardware from CUV, CUV aerostats and ground operating equipment, with payloads developed by Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI). According to CUV, it will provide Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) capability for small tactical units in Afghanistan and other locations.
The company said that the REF mission is to ‘rapidly increase mission capability while reducing risk to Soldiers and others by equipping operational commanders with off-the-shelf (government or commercial) solutions or near-term developmental items that can be researched, developed and acquired quickly.’
The STMPAS consists of several optional ISR payloads attached under a small specially designed tethered blimp, called a Helikite, and a trailer Carrier that stores the Helikite and the required winch, sensors and helium tanks. The STMPAS blimp can fly at 1000 feet for low cost, long term coverage for 24 hours a day for a week or more without maintenance or downtime for weeks at a time.
STMPAS has been tested by GTRI and the Army at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, and will fly in the Aerostat Limited Objective Experiment (LOE) at Fort Benning, Georgia in May 2012. The REF is procuring six more STMPAS for deployment to Afghanistan for further operational evaluation.
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