40E ‘SKY DRAGON’ – MISSION SUPPORT
BORDER & DEFENSE
Airships are an operationally attractive alternative to highly capable but costly ISTAR-enabled military drones, and the proliferation of smaller commercial UAVs that present SWaP (size, weight & power) challenges, which limit airborne support for border and other security missions. The flight performance capabilities of modern airships support manpower and budget efficient aerial patrol and monitoring, with the 40E Sky Dragon delivering further operational advantages like near vertical takeoff/landing (VTOL), single pilot operation, and lowered acquisition and sustaining costs versus fixed wing and rotary ISR alternatives.
The advanced 40E has been designed for more cost effective aerial monitoring and over-border observation because border security professionals readily appreciate the capabilities of robust ISR aircraft and helicopters, but not the manpower and acquisition/ sustaining costs associated with their flight operations. The Sky Dragon supports ISR mission success and efficiency with multi-payload mounting systems for radar, high-def EO/IR cameras, other remote sensing/designation technologies (e.g. LLDR/LIDAR), and/or communications relay and monitoring equipment.
HOMELAND & EVENT SECURITY
Enhancing homeland security monitoring at major public and sporting events can be challenging, but airship operations are natural and generally attributed to telecast and advertising support. With a useable payload exceeding 900Kg, the 40E Sky Dragon supports advanced radar, real-time multispectral imaging (day/night, IR, UV, etc.), electronic intelligence, and many other sensory technologies. When carrying wireless antennas aboard, these elevated platforms can relay or transmit communications and other data types by extending line of sight (LOS) over the horizon, for coordination and dissemination of real-time HD video surveillance and other acquired data.
CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE MONITORING
MARITIME & PORT SURVEILLANCE
LTA assets such as multi-role airships can support detection/ interdiction of Panga boats, micro subs and other traffic, while delivering HD multi-spectral imaging for analysis, or documentation to support prosecution. Aeros’ airships have successfully aided smuggling interdiction missions, identifying and documenting clandestine night beach drop locations and the coordinated activities of organized criminals. The Sky Dragon’s near-silent operations and on-scene duration capability were partially responsible for the successful missions, which our team supported with hangar construction, operational support logistics, and air and ground crew training.