DSEI 2023: Teledyne FLIR Defense unveils Black Recon Vehicle Reconnaissance System

During the DSEI 2023 exhibition, Teledyne FLIR Defense, a subsidiary of Teledyne Technologies Incorporated, is unveiling an advanced technology concept at this year's DSEI conference in London. This concept introduces the Black Recon Vehicle Reconnaissance System (VRS), aiming to facilitate autonomous launch and recovery of small drones from military vehicles, providing covert situational awareness without personnel leaving their vehicles.
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The Black Recon's deployment system can launch up to three UAVs during a mission (Picture source: Teledyne FLIR Defense)

The Black Recon VRS is a significant development program, featuring a new micro-unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) designed to withstand the demanding conditions of military vehicles. This system offers continuous, untethered reconnaissance at speeds that allow the UAV to operate ahead of advancing military vehicles, expanding situational awareness even beyond the line of sight.

Equipped with thermal and visual payloads, the Black Recon relays real-time imagery and targeting information back to vehicle crews. Operators can employ the system for various missions, including terrain assessment, mine and improvised explosive device detection, or close-up inspections under bridges using onboard illumination. The system excels in delivering high-precision reconnaissance, even in GPS-denied environments.

Housed within a rugged launch box mounted on a vehicle, the Black Recon's deployment system can launch up to three UAVs during a mission. Upon their return, a unique cradle-arm autonomously recovers the drones using patented technology, ensuring precise tracking, capture, and docking – day or night, even in adverse weather conditions. The drones are then automatically recharged, ready for subsequent missions.

Dr. JihFen Lei, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Teledyne FLIR Defense, highlighted that Black Recon signifies a notable advancement for military operations, as the capability to launch and recover UAVs swiftly from a vehicle, safeguarding the crew, can contribute to maintaining operational tempo in dynamic and complex environments.

Lei further mentioned that they are continually refining Black Recon's technology and exploring potential applications in various sectors, including law enforcement, border security, and critical infrastructure protection. They anticipate sharing this concept with industry partners during DSEI 2023.