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VECTOR-400: The autopilot designed specifically for aerial targets

  • UAV Navigation designs an autopilot for UATs with specific functionality, such as Sea-Skimming and navigation even without a GNSS signal.
  • This new autopilot fits into the Spanish company's global strategy: to provide autopilots of the highest quality which feature the latest technology. 

UAV Navigation has launched a new product known as the VECTOR-400, a compact autopilot which has been designed specifically for Aerial Targets (Unmanned Aerial Targets, UAT). It features a robust enclosure and a military grade connector designed to withstand the harshest environments, in accordance with MIL-STD 810 and MIL-STD 461.

"We wanted to develop a solution specifically for manufacturers of Aerial Targets," said Tobias Webster, the Managing Director of UAV Navigation, "that is why it was important for the autopilot to have the features required by this kind of UAV, such as Sea-Skimming (extremely low level flight) or the capability to navigate without a GNSS signal."

Thanks to its physical and logical redundancy, the VECTOR-400 is able to continue a mission in case of individual sensor failure and even when subject to jamming, maintaining accurate estimations of attitude and position. It features advanced algorithms for stall prevention and the ability to carry out an efficient gliding maneuver in case of engine failure.

The VECTOR-400 uses an Air Data Attitude and Heading Reference System (ADAHRS) and Inertial Navigation System (INS) developed by UAV Navigation, which provides high precision attitude information and which allows reliable navigation even under the most demanding circumstances. The AHRS gives the VECTOR-400 the capability to operate in GNSS-denied environments (less than 30 m/min drift) and also to execute highly dynamic maneuvers.

"The VECTOR-400 is not a product in isolation, rather it forms part of our global strategy. Some of its main features, such as the execution of completely automatic functions or its compact and easy to integrate software, which also allow it to be operated in case of datalink failure, are already used in other products in our autopilot family, such as the VECTOR-600" explained Webster.

In addition to its advanced technology, the VECTOR-400 benefits from the same stringent Quality standards that UAV Navigation insists upon for all of its products. The Company carries out rigorous calibration processes and acceptance testing on every single unit before it ships, together with its individual Certificate Of Conformity.

UAV Navigation has designed the VECTOR-400 to meet MIL-STD 810 and MIL-STD 461 standards. The design and development of its software and hardware has been carried out in accordance with DO-178C, DO-254 and also ASTM F3201-16 - which is the only certification currently available for unmanned aerial systems. 

"Not all autopilots are able to control highly dynamic platforms; even fewer are able to carry out advanced, high-speed maneuvers and low-level flight such as sea-skimming. That is why we are extremely pleased with this new product, which we believe meets a requirement in the market that had yet to be covered." observed the Director of the Spanish company. 

 

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About

UAV Navigation is a privately-owned company that has specialized in the design of flight control solutions for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) since 2004. It is used by a variety of Tier 1 aerospace manufacturers in a wide range of UAV - also known as Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) or 'drones'. These include high-performance tactical unmanned planes, aerial targets, mini-UAVs and helicopters.