Melbourne-based Sentient has announced the procurement of its ViDAR (Visual Detection And Ranging) wide-area maritime detection software by Insitu Pacific for use by the RAN in trials with the ScanEagle UAV.
The Kestrel Maritime ViDAR software is Australian-designed and is intended to be incorporated into a purpose-built payload that can be modularly fitted to the ScanEagle currently being flown by the RAN.
Insitu Pacific will test the payload, which automatically detects objects in real time, as part of its support for ongoing naval unmanned aircraft system experimentation activities.
“Kestrel Maritime ViDAR has the potential to be game-changing for naval UAS operations,” said Simon Olsen, director of business development, strategy and partnerships at Sentient, in a statement. “Small payload capacity and limited bandwidth restrict tactical UAS to primarily provide surveillance over objects of interest that have already been detected.
“Kestrel Maritime ViDAR now gives a UAS like the ScanEagle the crucial capability to search as well as to conduct surveillance, dramatically increasing its usefulness to the RAN.”