UAS ScanEagle in Canadian exercise

Oct. 10, 2011 at 8:57 AM
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BINGEN, Wash., Oct. 10 (UPI) -- UAS-manufacturer Insitu Inc. is touting the participation of its ScanEagle system during a recent Canadian military and government exercise.

Operation Nanook was focused around a major air disaster simulation, during which ScanEagle, an unmanned aerial system, provided overwatch to Canadian forces.

The runway-independent ScanEagle UAS was deployed by Insitu and its partner ING Engineering to identify traversable ground routes, to watch for polar bear threats and to monitor iceberg movements.

Commanders in tactical operations centers and troops on the ground received real-time, stable video.

During the exercise, Insitu and ING UAS operators launched and retrieved the aircraft. Handing control to the Canadian forces, company operators were on hand to provide technical assistance as needed.

"Adverse weather conditions are typical of ScanEagle operations," said Insitu Senior Vice President of Business Development Ryan Hartman. "Freezing temperatures, wind, whatever challenge our environment presents, we just work through it. Our standard is 99 percent mission-readiness with 30-minutes notice."

Designed by Insitu Inc., a subsidiary of Boeing, ScanEagle's modularity allows for rapid technology upgrades, like the 2010 introduction of the daylight-quality mid-wave infrared imager payload, and the soon-to-be-released electronically fuel-injected heavy fuel engine that will improve reliability in extreme environments like the arctic.

Modularity allows for rapid system reconfiguration, like adding another network node to beat line-of-sight challenges.

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