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Martin UAV unveils its newly upgraded V-BAT 128 VTOL UAV


Martin UAV, a leading advanced aviation technology manufacturer in the United States, announced on March 30 the public release of the latest unmanned aircraft system (UAS), the V-BAT 128, for defense and commercial use, including search and rescue, firefighting, logistic resupply, and energy and oil and gas operations.

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Martin UAV unveils its newly upgraded V BAT 128 VTOL UAV 01 Among the V-BAT 128’s enhancements are updates to the engine with increased horsepower, 11 hours of endurance, higher ceiling (20,000’ MSL) and interchangeable payloads (25 lbs not including fuel weight) for mission-specific requirements. The improved version of the V-BAT maintains its current small VTOL footprint to launch, transport and operate (Picture source: Martin UAV)


Martin UAV previously demonstrated its upgraded version of the V-BAT featuring an increase in power, payloads and endurance at the Army Expeditionary Warrior Experiment (AEWE). Over the course of several weeks, the V-BAT 128 flew numerous missions, showcasing its VTOL capabilities and the versatility of its small footprint; one of the impressive features noted from those involved in the exercise is the aircraft’s ability to transition from take-off to a vertical hover and persistent stare capability while maintaining a sensor line of sight, in spite of difficult terrain.

“Martin UAV continues to push the boundaries of what is possible for unmanned aircraft systems,” said Heath Niemi, chief development officer. “We have listened to the customer and expanded the capabilities and agility of the V-BAT 128, delivering technology that serves a wider range of mission needs. We’re proud to make the V-BAT 128 available to the broader market and to provide more power and payload that can be transported in the bed of a pick-up truck, or, inside a Black Hawk.”


Martin UAV unveils its newly upgraded V BAT 128 VTOL UAV 02

V-BAT 128 is ideal for takeoff and landing on both stationary and moving platforms, in areas with a footprint of less than 12-feet by 12-feet. Pictured here, A V-BAT  prepares to launch from the flight deck of the Military Sealift Command expeditionary fast transport vessel USNS Spearhead (T-EPF 1). (Picture source U.S. DoD)


As the interest and adoption of UAV/UAS increases across commercial industries, the company stated a renewed commitment to support these verticals adapting to new technologies. Most recently, the company announced the addition of industry veteran Bill Irby as the Chief Operating Officer, who previously held leadership roles with Textron, L3 Harris and Northrop Grumman. Martin UAV strives to make UAVs more accessible and easier to implement, empowering organizations to streamline operational efficiencies, security and increase the safety measures for its staff.

The V-BAT 128 is designed to make transportation and rapid tactical deployment easier for both defense and commercial applications. It can be assembled by two personnel in less than 30 minutes. The aircraft’s duct fan propulsion design provides for top operational safety by eliminating exposed rotors, which are commonly found in propeller-driven VTOLs.

V-BAT 128 is ideal for takeoff and landing on both stationary and moving platforms, in areas with a footprint of less than 12-feet by 12-feet. The upgraded V-BAT provides significantly enhanced payload capacity of 25 pound and interchangeable payloads to meet mission-specific requirements. Increased endurance of up to 11 hours, and higher thrust were made possible by leveraging a more powerful engine, the Suter TOA 288 model. With a wingspan of 9.7 feet, the V-BAT 128 can reach over 90 knots reaching altitudes of 20,000 feet.


Martin UAV unveils its newly upgraded V BAT 128 VTOL UAV 03 A drone operator guides a Martin UAV V-Bat drone as it lands on the deck of a frigate after a night mission (Picture source: Martin UAV)(Picture source: Martin UAV)