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A new, twin-engined fixed-wing UAV designed for maritime surveillance missions has been exposed by Tekever. The AR5 is designed to address maritime concerns such as environmental protection, fisheries monitoring, the identification of oil pollution, and the prevention of drug trafficking.

The unmanned aircraft provides an excellent way to complement existing maritime surveillance operations and a low-cost response to the huge challenges posed within the maritime environment. The system takes most of the capability of a tactical UAV and shrinks it down to a more affordable and commercially available solution.

In fact, the AR5 is already in operational use after Tekever secured maritime surveillance contracts in Europe, and it is now flying over both the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean, according to flightglobal.com.

The AR5 can carry payloads including maritime radar, synthetic aperture radar, and the automatic identification system (AIS). This allows it to identify ships using an AIS transponder, which shows a vessel’s name, position, speed, course and heading and identification number.

Ricardo Mendes, chief executive of Tekever UAS stresses that the AR5 can regularly operate beyond radio line of sight (BRLOS) with high-capacity satellite communications. An on-board processor can provide data analysis, supporting operators and helping to ensure that key information is not missed.