SpearUAV has launched its Ninox 103 UW Sub-to-Air encapsulated autonomous quadcopter, which it claims is the first loitering drone that can be launched from a submarine and other submerged platforms for immediate beyond-line-of-sight situational awareness.
With their ability to submerge, submarines have a huge strategic and tactical advantage. However, they are unable to see above the waves, beyond the horizon of a periscope.
In recent years, navies have looked to drones that can be launched underwater to act as a reconnaissance platform. However, these have tended to be fixed-wing aircraft, while the Ninox 103 is based on a quadcopter design that enables it to loiter in place by hovering.
According to SpearUAV, the Ninox 103 is stored in a capsule that can be launched from a submarine. This capsule floats to the surface and can remain dormant for up to 24 hours.
Once airborne, the Ninox 103 has a range of 10 km (6 miles) and an endurance of 45 minutes. With a payload of 1 kg (2.2 lb), the drone has low acoustic, thermal, and visual signatures, and has Electro-Optical/Infra-Red (EO/IR) sensors for reconnaissance and automatic target acquisition using its open-architecture artificial intelligence system.
It uses encrypted communication, a 3rd-party data integration, and cross-domain connect.
“The first technological development of its kind in the world, the Ninox 103 Sub-to-Air has been developed in response to the needs of Spear’s customers worldwide for a drone capable of underwater launch,” says Colonel (Retired) Gadi Kuperman, Founder & CEO of SpearUAV. “The system has been successfully tested, and Spear is collaborating with a number of defense companies as it continues to work on new developments.”