Madrid-based Alpha Unmanned Systems, SL and Tel Aviv-based Simplex Corporation are pleased to announce their partnership to enable multiple helicopter UAVs to be flown concurrently, by a single operator and ground control station, and beyond visual line-of-sight (BVLOS). The two companies are developing this unique capability for an Israeli customer.
In this critical time, drone usage is increasingly important for urgent missions. The ability to fly multiple drones simultaneously with minimal manpower, is essential. Many concurrent and complementary missions can now be flown at the same time and by the same operator, from urgent medical delivery to surveillance and quarantine enforcement. Eric Freeman, CEO of Alpha Unmanned Systems, states, “Alpha is very pleased to work closely with Simplex in the development and deployment of this Unified Flight System. Now, one trained operator can operate up to 6 Alpha 800 helicopters and 4 additional drones, each Alpha helicopter executing its own autonomous mission while the system manages the shared airspace and flight parameters dynamically.” The Alpha 800 gasoline-powered helicopter UAV is a top choice among First Responders as its 3hr autonomous flight time, 50km range and 3kg payload capacity make many types of missions possible. The platform is used in ResponDrone (https://respondroneproject.com/), a EU H2020 initiative, and by Spain’s UME (Unidad Militar de Emergencia).
Shay Levi, CEO of Simplex, states, “We are delighted that our CAAI certified and highly effective system allows operating multiple concurrent Alpha 800 missions while significantly increasing flight safety.” Simplex, a Tel-Aviv based company, works to make multi-UAV flying a reality. In partnership with Alpha and with other leading UAV manufacturers, its systems are in use today in Israel, the world’s most demanding UAV marketplace.
Madrid-based Alpha Unmanned Systems, SL has announced that its High Accelerated Lifetime Testing (HALT) solution is now in production.
This means that Alpha’s engines and transmissions will be tested in “near-flight” environments for significantly longer periods of time and in environments more similar to actual flight. Longer and more realistic testing means greater fault identification which will result in more reliable platform design and manufacture.
The HALT will also be used to define the maintenance periods of Alpha’s new helicopter UAV platform, (expected in H2Y20). It will also be used to execute the STANAG defined engine endurance tests and to fine-tune the fuel injection system.
“Testing is critical for flight reliability and safety. The incorporation of the HALT will dramatically increase the testing hours that Alpha engineers can use to improve design and manufacturing. We expect to dramatically improve our platform quality and reliability through this innovative and necessary tool,” said Álvaro Escarpenter, CTO and co-founder of Alpha.
In order to easily test the complete helicopter, including the engine and transmission systems, Alpha has designed and manufactured its own test bench (HALT) on which its helicopters will be able to test multiple engine and transmission loads in a precisely controlled environment. The HALT will also simulate endurance and life cycle tests in “near-flight” conditions.
Engine and transmission systems are especially critical for helicopter platforms. Since testing and validation exercises are time consuming and costly, and since industrial systems must be tested for thousands of cycles during development, Alpha’s expects to dramatically improve the airworthiness of its helicopter UAV platforms using HALT.
Alpha Unmanned Systems, a leading Spanish designer and manufacturer of remotely piloted gasoline-powered UAV helicopters, has been selected to participate in Inmarsat´s UAV Pop-up lab; a unique innovation programme exploring the value of satcoms in the commercial UAV sector. Along-side six other UAV companies, Alpha Unmanned Systems will execute a range of missions using Inmarsat´s world leading, global satellite network, enabling Beyond Line of Sight operations and global resilient command and control capability for safer and more efficient flight operations.
As part of the Pop-up Lab, Alpha Unmanned Systems will integrate the Inmarsat connectivity services using the Cobham AVIATOR UAV 200 terminal onto its Alpha 800. The Alpha 800 is a tactical gasoline powered helicopter UAV that provides 3 hours of continuous flight with a 3 kg payload. It is equipped with the lightest and strongest airframe in its class and a military-grade autopilot with high precision GPS and sensors. The Alpha 800 was originally conceived for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR) and is now also used for many other services, including delivery of urgently needed supplies.
Using this equipment and services, Alpha will execute a Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) mission to deliver urgent medical supplies in a limited/no radio-frequency coverage area. The mission will utilize Inmarsat satcoms to enable long-range control and real-time video streaming from the Alpha 800 tactical helicopter UAV, aiding the precision delivery of sensitive cargo such as medical supplies. The 3-hour flight time of the Alpha 800 means that a very large area can be covered, and its vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) capabilities allow for very precise control during missions.
Inmarsat´s satellite technology brings tremendous benefits for UAV missions in remote areas with poor terrestrial network coverage or rough terrains where radio line-of-sight is hard to achieve. Utilizing Inmarsat’s global L-band network, the Alpha 800 will be easily deployed to execute missions anywhere in the globe, ideal for humanitarian agencies and governments with a need for precision delivery of sensitive, time-critical cargo in remote areas.
Eric Freeman, CEO of Alpha Unmanned Systems said “Inmarsat´s satcom solution is great news for Alpha and our clients. Pilots can now execute longer missions, and in even more difficult terrain, while they themselves can be far from the Alpha 800 and its flight path.”
Jordan Picard, Digital Incubation Lead at Inmarsat, assured “We are delighted to work with companies such as Alpha Unmanned Systems to push the boundaries of innovation in the commercial UAV sector. We are especially interested in the Alpha 800 as a platform to deliver medical supplies in remote environments given its unique VTOL capability and now, its longer flight range enabled by satellite.”
Trial outcomes will be presented at a showcase event on May 30 2019 at Inmarsat’s headquarters. For more information about the Pop-up Lab, please visit http://www.inmarsat.com/UAVLab
The Spanish Armed Forces, through the DGAM (Dirección General de Armamento y Materiales), has acquired two Alpha 800 UAV helicopters from Alpha Unmanned Systems, SL (AUS).
The Alpha 800 is a tactical 14 kg gasoline powered helicopter that provides 3 hours of continuous flight with a 3 kg payload and 30 km of operating range. It is equipped with the lightest and strongest airframe in its class and a military-grade autopilot with high precision GPS and sensors. The Alpha 800 was originally conceived for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR) and for delivery of urgently needed supplies. It has been put to the test for UXO detection (unexploded ordnance) and is used in more than 5 countries for a wide variety of missions.
“The acquisition of these two Alpha 800 units by the Spanish Army is a great honor for Alpha and is a very important development for our Company,” says Eric Freeman, CEO of the Spanish company. “Spain’s Military Forces are well renown and are an important member of NATO. UAVs will be essential for military missions and First Responders in the future and I am delighted that Alpha Unmanned Systems can support the Spanish Military.”
The Alpha 800 is used from Indonesia to Hungary, for border control and surveillance. The Company, founded in 2014, offers Advanced UAV Engineering Services to global defense clients and its Alpha 800 helicopter UAV platform to both military and civilian customers.
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Alpha Unmanned Systems (alphaunmannedsystems.com) announced today that it has selected Robotic Skies, Inc. (roboticskies.com) to develop and implement a global support plan for its current and future commercial UAVs, currently featuring the Alpha 800 unmanned helicopter. Robotic Skies will provide a warranty program and field support management for Alpha Unmanned customers through its network of worldwide service centers.
Alpha Unmanned Systems designs and manufactures remotely piloted gasoline-powered helicopters for reconnaissance, surveillance and inspections. Founded in 2014 and based in Madrid, Spain, Alpha Unmanned customers include private industry, researchers, military and first responders in Asia, Middle East and Europe. The company’s flagship product, the Alpha 800, has over three hours of flight endurance, a payload capacity of 3 Kg and a range of up to 30 Km.
“Partnering with Robotic Skies will allow Alpha to greatly expand our customer base to nearly every geographic region of the world,” said Eric Freeman, CEO of Alpha Unmanned Systems. “We can now provide local maintenance, repair and field upgrades with the same attention and quality that we deliver from our HQ in Madrid. This global partnership for support services will ensure that our customers’ systems are always running well, with minimum downtime.”
Robotic Skies is the world’s largest provider of turnkey warranty program management, assembly/completion, and field repair services for industrial-grade unmanned aircraft. With a network of 150 independently owned and operated service centers throughout the world in over 30 countries, its customers include high-performance multi-rotor, hybrid, fixed-wing, and optionally manned platform manufacturers, as well large commercial enterprises and outsourced fleet-services providers.
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Alpha Unmanned Systems Selects Robotic Skies for Global Support
The Spanish UAV manufacturer, Alpha Unmanned Systems will present the Alpha 800, gasoline-powered helicopter UAV, at NATO’s Trident Juncture exercise in Trondheim, Norway.
From October 25th to November 7th, a live field exercise will take place, spanning air, sea and land areas of Norway. 45,000 participants from 31 nations will be deployed for the event. During the exercise Alpha will take part in the Enhanced Logistical Base demonstration, where leading players will show the future of military logistics.
Alpha Unmanned Systems will exhibit its Alpha 800 helicopter UAV. The Alpha 800 is a tactical 14 kg gasoline powered helicopter that provides 2.5 hours of continuous flight with a 3 kg payload and 30 km of operating range. It is equipped with the lightest and strongest airframe in its class and a military-grade autopilot with high precision GPS and sensors. It is well suited for surveillance and for the delivery of urgently needed supplies.
The Trident Juncture 2018 is an excellent event to carry out complex air operations, and it’s a great chance to highlight the Alpha 800, a reliable UAV platform “Made in Spain” and designed for hard work in challenging and complex environments
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