By Arie Egozi
Israeli company BlueBird has unveiled its new WanderB VTOL UAS. An unnamed navy has already selected the new UAS for deployment on its vessels.
The mini Electrical UAS combines the advantages of fixed wing UAV (long endurance, high speed, wind independency, large area coverage, ability to glide to safe landing in case of failure), with the advantages of the multi-copter (ability to takeoff / land in small and limited areas like a boat in mid-sea or a small forest clearance. This in addition to soft and accurate landing.
According to the company, the WanderB VTOL assures high operational availability for over 2 hours and a mission range of up to 50 Km, carrying a dual sensor payload with Full-HD video resolution and built-in tracker, for maximum situational awareness.
When operating from a ship in mid sea, the UAS may need to take-off and land in extremely turbulent air, caused by the unsteady wind conditions in the ship’s stern. Hence, the WanderB VTOL was designed to have a high power-authority (ratio between VTOL thrust and weight), to withstand horizontal gusts of up to 10 m/s in VTOL and cruise flight, and most vertical gusts up to 6m/s.
Recently, BlueBird was engaged by an undisclosed Navy to provide the WanderB VTOL to be an integral asset of its vessels due to its capability to take off and land automatically on the ship’s deck during day and night even when the ship is sailing in rough sea.