US: Northrop Grumman Corporation and Yamaha Motor Corporation, US, are collaborating to develop and market an innovative small, unmanned autonomous helicopter system. Called the Rotary Bat (R-Bat), the new system merges a proven airframe produced by Yamaha, with the latest autonomous control and intelligence-gathering technologies for use in urban environments for applications such as search and rescue, power line inspection and forest fire observation.
"The R-Bat joins our existing Bat family of unmanned aircraft systems used for tactical intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions. Yamaha Motor's lineage of reliable products speaks to the strength of R-Bat as a new member of our proven unmanned system portfolio,” said George Vardoulakis, Vice President for medium range tactical systems, Northrop Grumman. The R-Bat is based on the Yamaha Motor RMAX remotely-piloted unmanned helicopter that is currently used for industrial and farming applications. With more than 2 million accumulated flight hours, the RMAX platform provides agricultural support services to more than 2.4 million acres of farmland in Japan each year.
Source: Northrop Grumman