Canadian drone hardware and services company Draganfly has presented three new UAV products at a trade conference in Las Vegas, including a heavy-lift and a smaller, versatile craft it has likened to a Swiss Army Knife.
The two new drones and an aerial LiDAR platform were presented to the public at the Commercial UAV Expo in Las Vegas this week, after being first announced as product line additions last June. Draganfly CEO Cameron Chell has said impetus for developing the new heavy-lift craft, highly adaptable small drone, and enhanced LiDAR sensor product was direct input from customers detailing their evolving use requirements.
The Draganfly Heavy Lift Drone, Commander 3 XL Drone, and Long Range LiDAR system ushered out in Las Vegas week will be principally positioned toward aerial delivery activities, public services, emergency responders, agriculture businesses, energy companies, and mapping and surveying specialists. The company says the additional efficiency the updated tech provides will improve mission results while reducing time required to obtain them, and thereby contribute to increased return on investment objectives.
The heavy-lift UAV is a stark example of that logic in being built big and strong in order to fly more freight farther.
The Draganfly multirotor drone itself weighs 55 pounds, but has an additional payload capacity of 67 pounds, total flight time of 55 minutes, and range of 18.6 miles. The craft can carry a variety of cargo, and may be flown automatically or manually. Among early recipients of the workhorse was the humanitarian and emergency services group, Revived Soldiers Ukraine.
Draganfly’s Commander 3 XL Drone, meanwhile, was conceived for fast setup and deployment in a wider range of scenarios and mission objectives. Inspired by the company’s X4-ES, the Commander 3 XL is built around a single rectangular tube, and features quick-release propellers as well as arm folding options for rapidly breaking craft down.
Despite its compact size, the rugged, high-endurance, weather-resistant UAV carries up to 26 pounds of payload and has two different hovering delivery modes. It can reach a top speed of 45 mph, and 24-mile, or 50-minute flight capacity.
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The Long Range LiDAR system is similarly designed for a wide range of use cases when loaded on drones – as well as planes, helicopters, or any other aerial vehicle. The unit provides highly accurate distance measurements, and promises superior resolution in mapping and modelling compared to existing photogrammetry tech.
It’s intended for deployment in rural, forest, and urban areas, and by energy and telecommunication infrastructure owners. The system has already been used by Draganfly itself in demining work in Ukraine.