New Jersey, Virginia Sheriff's offices use Indago UAS in first response missions


The Sheriff's offices in New Jersey and Virginia have started using Lockheed Martin's Indago quadrotor small unmanned aerial system (UAS).

These offices have added Indago to their inventories to perform search and rescue operations, as part of the Project Lifesaver International (PLI) programme that supports clients with autism, Down syndrome and dementia.

First responders will use Indago UAS, paired with Project Lifesaver's electronic location equipment, to find special needs individuals who may wander.

Operators will be able to deploy Indago to locate missing individuals upon receiving a distress call, Lockheed stated.

Lockheed Martin unmanned systems Indago programme manager Rich Bonnett said: "Coupling the Project Lifesaver antenna and control elements with the Indago system expands signal detectability, serves as an airborne relay, and greatly improves the probability of location success across broad search areas.

"This innovative technology is available for Project Lifesaver agents to further their important public safety mission, and more importantly, to reunite individuals with their families and caretakers."

Indago is claimed to reduce the response time and increase the efficiency of search efforts when time is critical.

Weighing 5lb, the system can be deployed within minutes for a variety of missions including firefighting, disaster relief, precision agriculture and coastal erosion monitoring.

Somerset County New Jersey Sheriff Frank Provenzano said: "The Indago UAS will allow us to increase our capabilities in locating a client who has wandered. This new asset will give us the ability to search even more efficiently over a broader area and will increase the probability of a successful recovery.”

More first response agencies are anticipated to add Indago to their inventories in the near future.


Image: Deputies participated in training on Indago UAS earlier this year. Photo: courtesy of Lockheed Martin Corporation.