The Indago 2 unmanned aircraft system (UAS) from Lockheed Martin recently completed the first beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) pipeline and well assets inspection at the Foremost Testing Range in Alberta, Canada.
The flight was completed in partnership with Canadian UAVs, according to a news release. Indago 2 is Transport Canada Compliant, meaning it can be used routinely in Canadian airspace.
During the test, Canadian UAVs inspected the pipelines and wellheads with the quadrotor. The drone was equipped with its 30x payload, which is designed to capture high-resolution inspection images and video with 30x optical zoom and enhanced digital zoom.
“Going BVLOS has technically been solved for some time with regards to powerful communications links and autopilot hardware,” said Sean Greenwood, President of Canadian UAVs Inc., according to the release. “Canadian UAVs has been focused on creating an end-to-end paradigm in coordination with Transport Canada to conduct these operations outside of Restricted Military Airspace where our customers have a substantial regulatory and logistical needs to acquire actionable data.”
The Indago 2 weighs 5 pounds and has a 45 minute flight time. It can achieve ranges of up to five kilometers when operated with its handheld controller. The range can be extended beyond 10 kilometers with directional communications devices. It also features Hydra Fusion Tools that provide situational awareness during operations.
“Our systems routinely fly beyond line of sight for our military customers, which has allowed us to gain compliance status with Transport Canada for use in commercial airspace,” said John Molberg, business development lead for Lockheed Martin CDL Systems, according to the release. “This flight achievement is a bellwether for Canadian UAVs, Lockheed Martin and Foremost Test Range, and showcases the leadership provided by Unmanned Systems Canada and Transport Canada for the safe use of unmanned systems in Canadian airspace.”