SOFINS 2021: Novadem unveils NX160 new drone

Novadem specializes in aerial robotics. For 15 years, the Aixoise company has been designing and marketing drones intended for the civil and military markets with industrial expertise. Its solutions are now used around the world and are among the few combat-proven micro-drones.

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NX 160 drone (Picture source: Novadem)

Novadem continues to develop its range of drones for defense and security professionals, with the arrival of the NX160. This drone has extended capacities for a greater diversity of missions thanks in particular to its "mission pods" and its payload of 2kg.

After several years of success thanks to its NX70 drone, which equips the French armed forces and the Marseille firefighter battalion in particular, Novadem is completing its range with the NX160. Thanks to its carrying capacity increased by its payload of 2kg, the NX160 broadens the scope of Novadem drone missions and paves the way for the integration of specialized sensors. This is already materialized by the partnership between Novadem and Proengin offering a unique airborne chemical threat detection solution (AP4C + and NX160 drone).

The origins of the project? Pascal Zunino, director and co-founder of Novadem, explains: "We were requested by users and some of our industrial partners for specific missions to which the NX70 could not respond due to its carrying capacity. A solution had to be found to complete the spectrum of use of our solutions. We heard the needs and developed in record time a new carrier that takes over 80% of the NX70 solution. It shares the same ground station, the same data links, the same on-board avionics, which has enabled us to considerably reduce the development cycle. "

The NX160 complements the NX range for missions where a large payload, in the order of 2kg, is required. This is particularly the case for wearing specialized equipment such as an NRBC sensor for the detection of radiological or chemical threats, a LIDAR or sensor photogrammetry for surveying the terrain, a long-range observation turret, a load release device and many other needs. In terms of takeoff weight, the NX160 evolves between 6kg and 8kg depending on the payloads, for a range that can exceed the flight hour depending on the configuration. It thus provides extended capacities with as much mobility as ever, thanks to the transport of the entire solution (ground station, payload, battery, etc.) by a single man in a backpack.

System interoperability

The NX160, through its technological heritage, shares the same ground station as the NX70 allowing immediate use for an operator already trained in the NX70. This considerably limits training times for teams that are already operational. Users will be able to switch from the NX70 drone to the NX160 drone with the same ground station, paving the way for various missions where the NX70 intelligence micro-drone and the NX160 multi-mission mini-drone can coexist. So Novadem pursues its vision with interoperable and rationalized solutions to ensure high capacity consistency, expected by current users.

Versatility of missions

The NX160 offers a wide spectrum of missions thanks to a principle of "mission pods", interchangeable directly in the field, without tools. These pods will enrich the versatility of the NX160's missions during the life of the system with the objective of covering a maximum of operational needs through the same system. Novadem is leading the way with its partner Proengin by developing the first solution dedicated to the NRBC field to deal with chemical risks. The technical teams of Novadem and Proengin have been working for several months to integrate the new AP4C + detector in order to provide a unique NX160 & AP4C + solution, compact and efficient. The SOFINS Show will be an opportunity for the two partners to unveil the fruit of their collaboration.

Beyond chemical detection, the NX160 is also equipped with an ASIO-155 bi-spectral observation turret, the most efficient in its category, a product also jointly developed by Novadem and its partner INPIXAL.

Finally, a release hook concludes the first series of "mission pods" by allowing a load of up to 2kg for various needs (survival kit, buoy, smoke, etc.). Availability The NX160 will be matured during the second half of the year with first-time users in order to meet operational requirements as closely as possible.