Abu Dhabi. 21 February 2021. Europe’s leading provider of Rotary Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) platforms, UMS SKELDAR, is using leading international defence exhibition IDEX 2021 to announce a unique achievement for its flagship SKELDAR V-200 UAV platform – the successful automatic take-off and landing (ATOL) of a tactical UAV from a ship.
While full ATOL capability on land is a native characteristic of the V-200, UMS SKELDAR is the first company to achieve this unique ATOL compliance milestone in a naval setting. In recognition of its value as part of a ship’s future capability requirements, this latest development is currently being tested by NATO customers.
Previously, platforms have operated in assisted mode with a crew manually overseeing take-off and landing via a joystick or computer control. Now, full ATOL capability enables both take-off and landing to be performed through the simple press of a button. The platform uses a laser altimeter and GPS combination to track its location and calculate the required altitude reduction, culminating in a smooth and safe landing.
David Willems, VP Business Development and Strategy for UMS SKELDAR, explains: “This latest milestone for UMS SKELDAR is a real first: it is unique to our company and it has never before been achieved in a military setting. The SKELDAR V-200 was conceived as a maritime platform and this exciting achievement secures its place as the first choice for Navy commanders.”
In addition to this new capability, the SKELDAR V-200 continues to undergo both software and hardware developments to ensure continued improvement and maximum capability for customers. Willems adds: “We are focused on the continued improvement of both SKELDAR UAV platforms. Our ongoing modernization programmes aim to not only review the platforms’ capabilities, but also analyze customer requirements with a view to increasing the service suite we provide alongside.”