Migdal HaEmek, Israel
Steadicopter, one of the companies involved in the Rotary Unmanned Aerial Systems (RUAS) industry, recently unveiled its next generation Black Eagle 50 advanced lightweight unmanned robotic helicopter. New capabilities include an inertial navigation system with no dependence on GPS, as well as support for naval missions.
Steadicopter's Black Eagle 50 unmanned helicopter has been upgraded with several additional new features and is tailored for naval missions with its robust mechanical and electronic capabilities that support flight in maritime environmental conditions. The company also recently signed a cooperative agreement with Israel Shipyards for the marketing of the Black Eagle as part of the defense, intelligence and surveillance systems installed on its OPV (Offshore Patrol Vessel) family. The OPV vessels, based on the Nirit Class SAAR 4.5, are heavily armed with advanced weapons systems and can be equipped with helicopter carrying capability.
The Black Eagle 50 features a special inertial navigation system capability, based on input from the system's inertial and other sensors. Through a unique smart navigation algorithm, this input enables the continuation of the flight and the mission without relying on GPS giving the Black Eagle 50 a significant advantage in GPS-denied areas.
In terms of mission capability, the Black Eagle 50 is a VTOL (Vertical Take-Off and Landing) robotic observation system, suitable for tactical maritime and land Intelligence, as well as Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) missions. A data link connects the aircraft with the ground controller, enabling the transmission of live video and data between the two. The system has a steady hovering endurance of up to 3 hours and flight endurance of up to 4 hours.
At only 27 kg, the Black Eagle 50 is extremely lightweight and compact, with a maximum take-off weight of 35 Kg, and payload capacity of 5 Kg. It has a communication range of up to 150 km, depending on the client's requirements, and a service ceiling of up to 10,000 ft. Its total length is just 2540 mm, while its maximum air speed is 70 knots (126 Km/h) with a cruising speed of 45 knots (81 Km/h).
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