Z Microsystems to deliver IDS for STUAS programme on ships

27 February 2013 (Last Updated February 27th, 2013 03:50)

The US Naval Surface Warfare Center has awarded a contract to Z Microsystems to deliver its intelligent display series (IDS) in support of the RQ-21A Integrator-variant small tactical unmanned aircraft system (STUAS) programme.

RQ-21A UAS

The US Naval Surface Warfare Center has awarded a contract to Z Microsystems to deliver its intelligent display series (IDS) in support of the RQ-21A Integrator-variant small tactical unmanned aircraft system (STUAS) programme.

Under the contract, Z Microsystems will supply IDS with flat panel displays to provide real-time enhanced video (RTEV) capabilities for the Insitu-built Integrator UAS used by the US Marine Corps (USMC).

The STUAS programme is aimed at providing intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) support to US marines deployed onboard amphibious ships such as landing helicopter dock (LHD), landing helicopter assault (LHA) and landing platform dock (LPD).

"The Naval Surface Warfare Center selected Z Microsystems' displays after seeing how well they enhanced situational awareness and decision making with no added latency."

Designed to improve critical tactical surveillance missions, the LCD display panels use a high-powered FPGA to apply image enhancement algorithms to incoming video streams.

The built-in video enhancement of the IDS offers clear visual images even in low-visibility conditions and help improve decision making.

Z Microsystems military programmes vice president Bob Kopas said: "The Naval Surface Warfare Center selected Z Microsystems' displays after seeing how well they enhanced situational awareness and decision making with no added latency by clarifying images in fog, dust, sand, battlefield smoke and haze, typical when operating in a littoral or combat environment."

The US Navy recently completed the first test flight of the STUAS system from the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock.

Prior to launching from a LPD-class ship, the STUAS platform completed three months of land-based trial flights off the Naval Air Warfare Center weapons division in China Lake, California, US.


Image: The RQ-21A Small Tactical Unmanned Air System being recovered aboard the San Antonio-class LPD, USS Mesa Verde. Photo: US Navy photo by mass communication specialist 3rd class Sabrina Fine / Released.

Defence Technology