Red Cat Holding is continuing to transition its Teal Drones affiliate from its initial positioning as a maker of security and defense UAVs to one as a leading innovator in tech-packed small craft for military clients with the incorporation of Athena AI computer vision assets on its new Teal 2 product.
Puerto Rico-based Red Cat announced its accord with Athena AI to offer the Australian company’s computer vision architecture on the new Teal 2 drone, which has been developed as a military-grade craft for US and international government agencies. In addition to those machine-learning assets permitting high-speed tracking of objects for rapid decision-making support, the Teal 2 UAV has been developed with the participation of leading high-tech partners.
Those include Tomahawk Robotics, Reveal Technology, Immervision, and Teledyne FLIR, whose new Hadron 640R sensor optimized for nighttime operations has been integrated to the Teal 2 – the first drone ever to do so.
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Inclusion of Athena AI tech will allow Teal 2 drones to perform high-speed tracking of objects and, at slower speeds, in-depth data exploitation. The company’s product can also identify weapons and various other objects at night, and distinguish Friend or Foe differentiators like Cyalume HALOs and infrared beacons.
According to Athena AI CEO Stephen Bornstein, his company’s work to create computer vision architecture to support military operations after sundown will allow Teal 2 drones to fulfill its eponymous manufacturer’s slogan of mastering missions in the dark.
“Most military operations take place at night, and Athena is proud to help the Teal 2 ‘Dominate the Night’ by offering our computer vision architecture,” said Bornstein. “We’re also excited to showcase our tech to the global customer base that Red Cat has built on its reputation for exceptional products.”
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Indeed, this week’s announcement of the linkup coincided with Red Cat CEO Jeff Thompson’s ongoing meetings in Europe with NATO officials to discuss possible deployment of Teal 2 drones by defenders in Ukraine.
The craft’s nighttime capabilities previously led US Customs and Border Protection to acquire 54 of the UAVs, and Thompson is keen to establish Teal 2’s made-for-military chops with other US agencies that have used the company’s existing Golden Eagle drone.
“The Teal 2 is a mission-focused military drone, and our partnership with Athena enables us to integrate the very latest computer vision technology,” said Thompson. “In military operations, every second counts, and Athena’s ability to track objects at night means our drone can deliver crucial intel to warfighters and commanders, providing rapid decision-making support.”