Sky Eye Programs Rapier X-25 – Drones Information

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Rapier X-25 is a remote-controlled UAV-class system with a low weight (up to 25 kg maximum take-off weight) with the functions typical of tactical aircraft for monitoring, control and data acquisition (both at sea and on the ground).

The Rapier X-25 is equipped with innovative systems that can ensure its functionality in hostile environments, and it has been designed with optimization criteria in terms of aerodynamic efficiency, volume performance and structural weights to ensure a long service life (15-24 h) payloads on the latest State of the art (electro-optical and infrared, radar with synthetic aperture, LIDAR).

The Rapier X-25 system consists of:

  • 3 planes
  • 2 ground control stations
    The GCS enables the aircraft and its payloads to be managed by the operator (selection of flight modes and visualization of the data recorded by the on-board payload).
  • 1 pneumatic starting system
  • 1 Net Recovery System
    The NRS enables aircraft to be rescued from boats or maritime platforms. This system is an alternative to the parachute and airbag configuration to aid the mission in a hostile environment.

Rapier is designed to integrate multiple payloads with different functions in terms of capabilities, weights and sizes. Flexibility is ensured by the modularity of the fuselage and the ability to change the configuration of the on-board systems in order to obtain an optimized aircraft balance.

  • Electro-optical / infrared sensor. The EO / IR sensor is the basic payload with which the ISR mission can be carried out. Rapier X-25 offers customers the option to choose between two types of EO / IR sensors: the basic sensor (light weight) and the high-performance sensor (laser identifier and range finder with maximum detection values).
  • Synthetic aperture radar. A SAR can be paired with an EO / IR sensor to optimize performance and provide change detection capabilities in ISR missions. This radar can identify objects, oil spills and polluted areas by providing high resolution maps: an accuracy of approximately 10 cm is provided and maps cover areas of 2 x 4 km from a ground level of 1000 meters. The total system weight is minimized to ensure a long service life, depending on the EO / IR sensor installed on board.
  • Detect and avoid sensor. The same HW used for the SAR, in different ways, with specific SW and with a different antenna, can be used for collision avoidance (smaller sizes and lower power consumption) and target acquisition.
  • Lidar. Lidars with low weight and a similar power consumption as SARs guarantee an accuracy of a few centimeters. The ranges are lower than those of the SAR (3-4 km), but such devices can be used to perform ISR functions, situation awareness, meaning and avoidance, and 3D mapping.
  • Multi / hyperspectral Cameras. This type of camera enables specific missions (e.g. change detection, anti-camouflage, terrain features, fire detection, agricultural surveillance) to be carried out using image analysis and comparison collected at a different wavelength.
  • Channel. Thanks to a special transmitter installed on board, it is possible to run a RelΓ¨ radio over the platform as a bridge between ground units and command stations.

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