The Indago 3 quad-rotor unmanned aerial system (UAS) is equipped with TrellisWare Technologies’ MANET software products. Image courtesy of Lockheed Martin Corporation.
Indago 3 is an advanced variant of the Indago UAS. Image courtesy of Lockheed Martin Corporation.
The Indago 3 unmanned aircraft integrates the Kestrel 3 autopilot system. Image courtesy of Lockheed Martin Corporation.

Indago 3

The Indago 3 quad-rotor unmanned aerial system (UAS) is the newest variant of the Indago UAS developed by Lockheed Martin. It offers superior reliability and ruggedness when compared to other UAS in its class.

The UAS can be used for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), search and rescue (SAR), inspection, disaster relief, firefighting, and first response missions.

Indago 3 design and features

The portable Indago 3 quad-rotor UAS can be stowed into a man-packable unit. It requires no special tools for assembly and can be unfolded in 60 seconds. The sturdy UAV is suitable for operation in severe environments and all weather conditions.

The UAV offers a low acoustic and visual signature during take-off and flight. The haze grey colour scheme further minimises visual detection during operation. The enhanced Indago 3 system is equipped with improved propulsion for achieving reduced noise signature and extended range than its predecessor.

The military-grade encrypted and secure data link and extended range radio enable long-range operation at low-flight altitudes.

The unfolded Indago 3 unmanned aircraft has a length of 32in, width of 32in and height of 7in. It measures 12in-long, 9in-wide and 6in-high when folded, and weighs less than 2.26kg. It has a flight endurance of up to 50 minutes based on its payload configuration.

The unmanned quad-copter has a range of 10km and can fly at a cruise speed of 40km/h. The maximum operating altitude of the UAV is 18,000ft. The operational temperatures vary between -30° and 120°.

Indago 3 payload details

The UAV can carry multiple hot-swappable payloads, which provide clear, high-resolution still images and videos in all weather conditions. The payloads allow the UAV to capture still images with 10mpx resolution, while vision processing technology aboard the platform provides click-to-track capability.

The click-to-track capability reduces operators’ workload by providing advanced autonomy when conducting surveillance or inspection missions. It also has a built-in laser illuminator that allows users with night vision goggles to see subjects during military missions, such as search-and-rescue.

Navigation and flight control

The UAV can be deployed on field in 60 seconds and can be flown in 2.5 minutes. It is equipped with proven Kestrel 3 autopilot system, which integrates onboard flight sensors, communication and payload systems for superior climb, descent and forward flight manoeuvre capabilities.

“The UAS can be used for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), search and rescue (SAR), inspection, disaster relief, firefighting, and first response missions.”

The TW-600 Ocelot™ embedded module aboard the aircraft minimises radio frequency footprint. It supports easy integration with other equipment and existing systems and ensures reliable connectivity for tactical mobile adhoc networking.

The module also acts as a network relay hub to send and receive IP data and provides interfaces for audio, data and power control.

Ground control system of Indago 3 UAV

The UAV is operated using a weather-resistant wireless hand controller featuring a large touchscreen. The ergonomically designed controller weighs 1.58kg and offers a runtime of four hours. It provides an easy-to-use interface for uninterrupted UAV operation.

The hand-controller is equipped with the Virtual Cockpit™ with a user-oriented mapping interface and powerful mission preparation tools, allowing the operator to perform in-flight re-tasking and full waypoint navigation. It also allows onboard video recording of high-definition videos and enables the storage of stills through a SD card.

The controller uses a windows-based operating system and integrated GPS, 4G LTE connectivity and Wi-Fi link. It supports mesh-capable video transmission across multi-node networks. The wireless hand controller is compatible with fixed-wing, as well as vertical take-off and launch (VTOL) small-unmanned aircraft systems (SUAS).

The Global Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) Market 2011-2021

This project forms part of our recent analysis and forecasts of the global unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) market available from our business information platform Strategic Defence Intelligence. For more information click here or contact us: EMEA: +44 20 7936 6783; Americas: +1 415 439 4914; Asia Pacific: +61 2 9947 9709 or via email.