FLIR Systems has announced the launch of the new FLIR StormCaster family of payloads for the company’s SkyRanger R70 and R80D SkyRaider Unmanned Aerial System (UAS). The first two products in the StormCaster range are the StormCaster-T, which delivers continuous zoom and longwave infrared (LWIR) imaging, and StormCaster-L, which provides ultra-low-light imaging, tracking, and mapping.
The rugged next-generation StormCaster payloads feature a 7X improvement in line-of-sight stabilization, enhanced range of motion, and increased geolocation accuracy, providing small units with the capability to conduct intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions and other challenging operations. Modules can quickly and easily be interchanged between FLIR’s SkyRanger and SkyRaider UAS.
The StormCaster-T payload incorporates a FLIR Boson thermal camera with a continuous zoom lens and 75-millimeter maximum focal length. It enables daytime or night-time detection, recognition, identification, and target acquisition as well as long distance ISR. The StormCaster-L is an ultra-low-light imaging camera featuring 4K recorded video and full-color night vision in low-light conditions. The payload offers superior ISR and mapping performance during twilight and nighttime operations.
David Ray, president of the Government and Defense Business Unit at FLIR, commented: “StormCaster-L and –T are just the beginning of this new line of advanced, high-performance payloads for our small, tactical UAS platforms. For mission needs ranging from force protection and border security to clandestine operations, FLIR StormCaster will provide heightened situational awareness, bolstered by our aircraft’s onboard, real-time artificial intelligence.
“We will develop more multi-sensor payloads through 2020 that deliver on our promise to offer capabilities at the individual operator level that previously required larger, more expensive UAS.”