Azerbaijan develops national UAVs

By: Nigar Orujova

Azerbaijan has developed an unmanned aerial vehicle ‘Smartplane’.

A source in the telecommunications market told Trend, the Azerbaijani engineers have created the vehicle with the support of High Technology Park, where the project works were conducted.

The new development may be used to film the area. The UAV can be controlled using a laptop computer, as well as smartphones and tablet computers running the operating system Android and iOS.

The developers said the Smartplane can fly for up to 80 minutes, with a maximum speed of 47 kilometers per hour.

Weighing just 650 grams the device is able to lift a payload of 300 grams. The device can be configured for target operation, by setting up a multi-spectral camera, thermal camera, a weather sensor, etc.

In order to attract investments in the project, developers used the popular crowd-funding platform Kickstarter, designed for creative projects.

The annual report of the platform showed that projects hosted on that platform in 2014, attracted $529 million in investments. More than 22,200 projects have been funded.

Azerbaijan is one of the main importers of UAVs, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. While the main importers are the UK, India and Italy, they are closely followed by Azerbaijan, Germany and Turkey.

The main exporter of such vehicles is Israel that produced over 60 percent of UVAs in the world in 1985-2014. The U.S. and Canada are other major exporters.

Azerbaijan mainly uses unmanned exploratory and fighting vehicles produced in Israel.

Currently, unmanned aerial vehicles are produced in Azerbaijan by Azerbaijani-Israeli joint venture. In addition to the armed forces of the country, Azerbaijan also supplies UAVs to NATO.

SOURCE: Azer News