The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has issued a contract to Schiebel for the supply of the latest version of its rotary wing UAS (unmanned aerial system), the CAMCOPTER S-100. The contract for supply was awarded on the 6 February 2017 and includes three years of follow-on contractor logistics support.
The RAN first released an international Request for Tender for a UAS capability in February 2016. Back in 2015, Schiebel demonstrated the S-100's multi-sensor capability to the RAN and Australian government departments in a series of test flights on the south coast of Australia.
The primary goal of the trials was to provide the RAN with a comprehensive understanding of how an advanced rotary wing UAS could be used to support maritime and littoral Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance (ISR) tasks.
The trials featured three key mission payloads; the Finmeccanica - Selex ES SAGE ESM and PicoSAR radar and the L-3 Wescam MX-10, which were operated in realistic maritime security scenarios in the littoral and open ocean.
Schiebel’s CAMCOPTER S-100 was used by the Italian Navy as part of its Mare Nostrum mission in the Mediterranean to rescue migrants in distress. The French Navy used the rotary-wing UAV to help monitor illegal fishing activities and it was also used in EU Naval Forces’ Operation Atalanta against piracy in the Horn of Africa.
The S-100 also participated in the UK Royal Navy’s Unmanned Warrior showcase, which was held off the west coast of Scotland last October. Its capabilities have been demonstrated to Navies and Coast Guards in Canada, South Africa, Brazil, Spain and Germany.