Raven tactical UAV to get sensor boost

Aerovironment, which makes the Raven RQ-11B unmanned aerial vehicle for the Army and other military services, has unveiled a new miniature gimbaled sensor payload that the company says will give warfighters better situational awareness on the battlefield via higher visual fidelity and continuous observation of an item of interest, reports 4gwar.

The modular payload features a high-resolution color and infrared thermal video sensor on a gimbal, and replaces two stationary payloads currently used on the 4.5 pound Raven. 

In its Fiscal 2013 budget request, the Army is seeking $26 million to acquire Ravens for small-unit intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, the story states. In 2012, Congress authorized the purchase of 900 Ravens for $60 million.

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