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A new antenna will expand the operational capabilities of the Puma AE UAV for maritime missions. The system provides naval operators with immediate tactical situational awareness, while eliminating the need to redirect the vessel or reconfigure the direction of an antenna to maintain an effective communication link.

The 360 Multi-Sector Antenna (MSA) launched by AeroVironment was specifically designed to support Puma AE maritime missions, according to the company’s announcement.  

Featuring an integrated array of 24 high-gain auto-selective antennas, the new 360 MSA analyzes downlink data quality and automatically switches between antenna patches with greater margin to deliver 360-degree continuous command and control coverage within a 20km nominal range.

The Puma AE is a small, battery-powered, American hand-launched unmanned aircraft system whose primary mission is surveillance and intelligence gathering using an electro-optical and infrared camera.

The antenna provides Commanding Officers (COs) with complete control of the Puma AE aircraft and payload and access real-time, decision critical ISR information. Additionally, it enables the bridge and combat team with mission planning, real-time moving map, high resolution imagery, etc.

The new system joins the company’s Long Range Tracking Antenna (LRTA) to provide operators with immediate tactical Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities. LRTA’s 360-degree auto-tracking function enables land-based operators to expand the command and control range of Puma AE to approximately 60km, providing critical ISR data while being positioned further away from dangerous areas of interest.

Available in M3/4/6 operating bands, 360 Multi-Sector Antenna provides continuous 360-degree long-range command and control between naval operators and Puma AE UAS for maritime applications