Real-time intelligence is vital to successful field operations. High-performance sUAS give members of military and defense capabilities to rapidly map large areas autonomously for seamless coordination of forces, protecting operations and improving mission effectiveness in a variety of terrain.

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    How are sUAS used in national defense?

    Tactical military or humanitarian land operations depend heavily on the terrain. AgEagle systems collect and process accurate near real-time data that helps the commander to define the environment and coordinate mission operations.

    Tactical mapping – Warfighters and frontline defenses use rapidly deployable UAVs to map terrain, areas and activities of interest. This near real-time situational awareness provides ground forces with a tactical advantage for rapidly planning and executing mission operations while enhancing safety.

    Intelligence – Mission-directed swappable sensors such as RGB, 3D, multispectral and thermal allow sUAS to provide detailed intelligence for analysis and decision making. Unclassified intelligence can be shared and integrated with situational awareness tools such as ATAK.

    Reconnaissance – Operators gather real-time intelligence about the local terrain, friendly unit actions, equipment recognition and possible enemy threats. The data collected also supports change detection.

    How are sUAS used for intelligence preparation of the battlefield?

    Accurate geospatial information is the foundational component for intelligence preparation on the battlefield.

    Area obstacles – Aerial 3D maps enable terrain visualization, adding realism to mission planning and rehearsal activities for urban missions.

    Choke points – Operators can use 3D imagery to characterize choke points for traffic and mission operations using accurate dimensions. For example, cameras such as the S.O.D.A. provide an RGB resolution of 5,472 x 3,648 px for detailed, vivid orthomosaics and ultra-accurate 3D digital surface models.

    Concealment – Thermal camera-generated 2D maps help soldiers see areas of interest not visible in RGB imagery. The eBee series Duet T thermal mapping camera includes a high-resolution thermal infrared (640 x 512 px) camera and a S.O.D.A. RGB camera with a built-in Camera Position Synchronisation feature for seamless image overlays.

    Cross-country mobility – As planned courses of action change often, sUAV operators need the flexibility to modify missions on-the-fly to provide additional input as required and complete the mission.

    Fields of fire – The degree of detail required in analyzing the battlespace environment varies depending on the mission; and for this reason, the operator can adapt eBee sUAV accuracies to the mission.

    Mobility corridors – In complex environments eBee sUAS help operators to open mobility corridors quickly. For example, eBee TAC enables operators to map up to 18.7 km / 11.6 mi corridors, approximately 3X longer than a typical quadcopter’s coverage of 9 km / 5.6 mi per battery by comparison.

    Road networks – Rapidly shifting environments requires a highly accurate mobile solution to provide current intel on roadways and threats. The eBee TAC can cover up to 500 ha / 1,235 ac mission coverage while flying at 120 m / 400 ft to deliver insights on transportation and infrastructure for planning, decisions and safe transport.

    What are the benefits of sUAS to soldiers? 

    Improved situational awareness – sUAVs support battalion-and-below ground-maneuver guided by on-demand aerial intelligence. Small unit commanders can use real-time high-resolution maps for responsive tactical reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition.

    Enhanced force protection – Unclassified aerial maps can be integrated with situation awareness tools such as ATAK for seamless communication and coordination of forces in the field.

    Secure navigational routes – Tactical mapping provides commanders advance visibility for planning safe transport routes for mobilized troops. Tactical mapping on-demand (TMOD) provides teams with a higher reactivity time and safety because they don’t need to wait for the availability of planes, helicopters or satellites and pilots and airmen can focus on value-added missions instead.

    Fast procurement – Systems added to the Blue UAS list, such as eBee TAC, do not require a DoD exception policy to procure or operate as they have undergone a cyber-security evaluation, a policy compliance check, and were issued the necessary administrative documentation. Federal government partners can also leverage this effort for their programmatic needs without duplicating efforts.

    What types of sUAS data outputs are available

    3D models – A three-dimensional texture map (X, Y, Z) that displays the site’s surfaces, walls and edges with high precision. High-resolution 3D models are used to generate digital twins of terrain, cities and critical infrastructure. This reconstructed intelligence helps with operations preparation, planning and running VR simulations before sending orders to the field.

    Orthomosaic maps – A geospatially accurate and detailed 2D representation of a site by combining a large number of nadir drone images. These maps can be rapidly processed in the field as unclassified intelligence that can be shared with units in the field.

    Terrain and Digital Surface Models (DSMs) – DSM maps take 2.5D information to give an accurate elevation representation of the field of operations. Aerial photo data mapped onto a terrain model base helps conduct surveys and develop tactical strategies.

    Thermal maps – Thermal photogrammetry allows for target detection through structures and environmental obstructions such as smog and smoke for surveillance or tracking.

    What software do you need?

    • eMotion is a leading drone software solution for flight planning, geotagging and photo stitching. From here the imagery can be exported for further processing in Pix4D and other software.
    • Military forces can also integrate further with ATAK for situational awareness, moving maps and the ability to share unclassified data quickly, accurately and securely – while mitigating risk.

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