Monday, September 20, 2010

UAV payloads contract for persistent surveillance on small unmanned vehicles goes to Trident Systems

Persistent surveillance experts at the U.S. Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division Lakehurst at Lakehurst Naval Air Station, N.J., needed technology solutions for persistent intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) on small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). They found their solution from Trident Systems Inc. in Fairfax, Va.

The Naval Air Warfare Center awarded Trident Systems a $48.5 million contract Wednesday for persistent ISR technology on small UAVs. The Naval Air Warfare Center at Lakehurst also procures persistent surveillance payloads for tethered aerostats and other airborne platforms.

Trident Systems produces UAV payloads such as the UAV-Mounted Foliage-Penetrating Synthetic Aperture Radar (TUFSAR) for small UAVs with wingspans shorter than eight feet. for use with forward-deployed military units. TUFSAR is designed to extend capabilities for applications such as mobile convoy protection and secure communications relay.

The TUFSAR system helps fill a technology gap in small UAV payloads that until recently has limited UAV reconnaissance capabilities primarily to image capture. The TUFSAR is an all-weather, foliage penetrating radar system that can provide persistent surveillance in smoke, fog, and darkness, company officials say.

The TUFSAR system is able to detect vehicles and structures obscured by foliage in all weather conditions possible using small UAVs, company officials say. The payload weighs less than 10 pounds with integrated antenna.

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