Lockheed Martin has announced that it is teaming with Project Lifesaver International, a non-profit organisation that provides equipment and training for quickly locating and rescuing missing persons, and Loen Engineering Inc., a manufacturer of radio frequency products, to bring advanced technology to first response agencies. The Indago small unmanned aerial system (UAS) will be integrated with an innovative lightweight antenna and receiver developed by Loen Engineering. The system allows Project Lifesaver agencies and first responders to rapidly locate special needs individuals who have wandered from their homes.
“Using the Project Lifesaver location device with aviation assets will extend search areas from approximately one and a half miles to well over seven miles,” said Gene Saunders, chief executive officer and founder of Project Lifesaver International. “Integrating Lockheed Martin’s Indago with the Project Lifesaver capability is a game changer for Project Lifesaver agencies because it offers an affordable alternative to manned aviation assets and can be used by any first responder agency.”
First responders have relied on manned aircraft to conduct aerial search and rescue operations, and the Indago reduces the response time and increases the efficiency of search efforts when time is critical. The five-pound, collapsible Indago system can be stored in the trunk of any squad car and deployed within a matter of minutes.
“This partnership opens the aperture for unmanned systems to be used in critical search and rescue situations that aid public safety agencies with the important humanitarian mission targeting high-risk individuals,” said Dave Pringle, general manager of Lockheed Martin Procerus Technologies. “Indago’s ability to provide an eye-in-the-sky in just minutes enables first responders to increase their effectiveness in locating wandering persons and reuniting them with their families.”
Indago is a proven, reliable and easy to operate quad rotor small UAS that requires no assembly. Coupling the Project Lifesaver antenna and control elements with the Indago system expands signal detectability, serves as an airborne relay, and greatly improves the probability of location success across broad search areas. The Indago’s industry-leading flight time of 45 minutes and electro-optic infrared gimbaled imager provide high quality data and enhanced situational awareness for operators to make real-time decisions. Indago is capable of providing tactical situational awareness and geo-location to aid in a variety of missions, from firefighting to precision agriculture to search and rescue.