ORLANDO, Fla., 13 May 2014. L-3 Unmanned Systems in Ashburn, Va., is introducing its Airborne Pursuit and Exploitation (APEX) small tactical unmanned aircraft system (UAS) at AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems 2014 conference.
L-3’s APEX UAS is a compact, lightweight system designed as a small tactical intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) platform, with a capacity to carry multiple payloads simultaneously. It is well suited for close-range ISR missions, first responder calls or over-the-hill reconnaissance missions, low-intensity conflicts, and urban warfare operations.
“With APEX, we’re offering today’s warfighters an unprecedented level of capability from a small platform,” said J.R. Gear, vice president of strategic development at L-3 Unmanned Systems. “APEX’s ability to be operated by a very small team and provide multi-mission and payload flexibility brings a new level of capability to expeditionary operators. The system is currently being used by U.S. Forces.”
APEX is an all-electric UAS that provides nearly seven hours of endurance with a range of 100+ kilometers (km) using a high-power series Lithium Polymer (LiPo) battery system and is runway-independent and expeditionary. Operated by a team of three people, APEX reduces the need for a large operational footprint, while providing the equivalent ISR capability offered by larger UAS platforms. L-3’s APEX employs a parachute recovery system, eliminating the need for a runway or specific recovery device, and utilizes a pneumatic rail-launched system. Unique to the UAS is an electro-optical/cooled infrared gimbal payload, which provides both day and night surveillance and reconnaissance capability.
APEX is on display at the L-3 exhibit, Booth 401, at the AUVSI conference, May 12–15 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.