Unmanned aerial systems (UASs) serve as robotic partners to mobile troops, owing to their surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. One of the more versatile UAS devices, the MAGNI, was just launched by Elbit Systems. It is a vertical-take-off-and-land (VTOL) UAS that can be launched from any combat vehicle in less than one minute and reach altitudes as high as 4000 ft. The multiple-rotor vehicle weighs only 2.5 kg but can carry payloads as large as 0.35 kg.
The fully autonomous MAGNI system integrates a thermal payload, a communications suite, automatic coordinate tracking capability, and built-in interface with Battle Management Systems (BMS). The vehicle operates as long as 30 min. with a range of 3 km. It is designed for day or night intelligence gathering with the capability to wirelessly feed target information to command-and-control stations. The MAGNI UAS was constructed according to reduced size, weight, and power (SWaP) requirements and is designed for single-user remote operation.