Israeli company Elbit showcased a new maritime patrol mission suite for its Hermes 900 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at the Aero India Airshow 2013 in Bangalore.
Images of the Hermes 900 on the Elbit stand at Yelahanka airbase showed it deploying life rafts and equipped with a maritime patrol radar suite featuring the Selex Galileo Gabianno T200 X-band synthetic aperture radar (SAR).
The set-up takes advantage of the Hermes 900's 350 kg payload. As well as the SAR, payloads include an automatic identification system (AIS), an electro-optical multisensor payload, and electronic surveillance systems. Elbit said in a release that it also has "redundant line-of-sight and satellite communications [SATCOM] links and radio relay, enabling the operator to 'talk through' to vessels at sea".
The SATCOM link would enable the aircraft to be operated at low altitudes at extended ranges, allowing it, for example, to fly beneath the cloud base at long distances offshore.
Ran Tavor, vice-president of Asia-Pacific and CIS business at Elbit, told IHS Jane's on 6 February that developing the Hermes 900's maritime mission suite involved embedding parts of a naval C4I network in the system's ground control stations (GCS).
by James Hardy / Janes