Kaman Reveals New Medium Lift UAV for Expeditionary Logistics
September 21, 2021
Kaman Corporation has unveiled its KARGO UAV, a new unmanned aerial vehicle designed for expeditionary logistics within military environments. Built with the U.S. Armed Forces future operating concepts in mind, Kaman said the KARGO UAV includes a rugged design, a compact form factor that can fit in a standard shipping container, and easy deployment that can be unloaded and operated by as few as two people.
“The Kaman KARGO UAV is the only system of its class that is purpose-built to provide deployed Marines, Sailors, Airmen, Soldiers, and Coast Guard autonomous resupply in the lethal, fluid combat environment that future military operations will entail or for regular logistics missions,” said Ian Walsh, CEO of Kaman. “Our deployed service men and women have persistent logistics challenges that we are answering with this reliable, maintainable, and affordable solution.”
Designed to provide cost-effective cargo hauling in its conformal pod or external sling load configuration, the KARGO UAV can self-deploy with no payload up to 523 nautical miles with a maximum lifting capacity of 800 pounds. The size and class of the vehicle also has multiple commercial applications, and Kaman said this is part of a growth strategy involving a family of purpose-built KARGO vehicles for multiple and repeatable missions.
Kaman partnered with Pittsburgh’s Near Earth Autonomy in the pilot program. Leveraging ongoing and concurrent collaboration between the two companies on the Marines’ TITAN UAS, Near Earth will provide obstacle avoidance and other technologies such as precision landing, sense and avoid, and navigation in a GPS-denied environment.
“Near Earth recognizes logistics as a compelling use case for autonomous air vehicles and is delighted to collaborate with Kaman on the development of a purpose-built vehicle for expeditionary logistics,” said Sanjiv Singh, CEO of Near Earth Autonomy. “Working with Kaman on this bold concept is pivotal for bringing together an ecosystem of technologies necessary for safe and efficient cargo UAVs.”
Over the past six months, flight development testing of a scaled KARGO UAV demonstrator was completed to prove out the air vehicle design – flight testing of a full-scale autonomous vehicle is planned for 2022. Kaman said the KARGO UAV leverages commercial off-the-shelf components as well as thousands of hours of automated and autonomous flight data from the K-MAX TITAN program, to reduce schedule and technical risk.
For more details on Kaman and its offerings, visit its website here.