New Small UAS Programme to Enhance ADF ISR Capabilities
On 1 June, Australian Defence Minister Senator Marise Payne and Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne announced that the Australian Defence Force (ADF) will be deploying the AeroVironment WASP AE UAS with Sentient Vision Systems’ KESTREL automated object detection software.
Acquisition of the WASP will include capability from Sentient and partners GD Mediaware and XTEK to provide the ADF with a new small UAS (SUAS) surveillance and reconnaissance capability, the ministers said. KESTREL is a software solution that automatically detects small moving objects on land or small objects on the surface of the ocean, in real-time within EO/IR sensor feeds. KESTREL specialises in detecting objects difficult for operators to see, such as vehicles and people moving in challenging land environments or small boats and people in the water. Operators are able to use wide field of view settings to cover larger search areas with a higher probability of detection.
“WASP AE provides all-environment situational awareness in a highly portable package,” Kirk Flittie, AeroVironment Vice President and General Manager of AeroVironment’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems business segment, commented. “Along with our Australian partners XTEK, GD Mediaware and Sentient, we look forward to supporting and protecting ADF forces with the industry’s leading small UAS capabilities.”