Red Cat Holdings has completed the second phase of its artificial intelligence and computer-vision partnership with Athena AI.
By processing video that the Red Cat Teal 2 military-grade drone’s thermal-imaging sensor recorded during a nighttime test flight, Athena’s technology has successfully performed target recognition and battle tracking, a capability that allows commanders fast decision-making on the battlefield with artificial intelligence assistance.
“Nighttime computer-vision capability is a Teal 2 add-on we support for users who need high-value data at night,” said George Matus, founder and CEO of Red Cat subsidiary Teal Drones. “The images and insights that Athena’s technology deliver are outstanding. Athena’s battle-tracking capabilities and artificial intelligence, combined with Teal’s best-in-class drone, give warfighters the unfair advantage.”
Athena has licensed its proprietary computer-vision architecture to Red Cat, which allows high-speed tracking of objects and, at slower speeds, in-depth data exploitation. Athena’s solution can identify weapons, humans and other targets at night, as well as Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) markers, such as Cyalume HALOs and IR beacons.
“Unlike a lot of other drones in the sUAS quad space that aren’t MISB-compliant, the Teal 2’s KLV metadata unlocks the full decision-suite support of Athena AI,” said Athena CEO Stephen Bornstein. “This combination of a nighttime sUAS with live-vehicle metadata allows for real-time situational awareness to support battle tracking, Common Operational Picture (COP) at higher echelons of command, and accurate targeting.”
The Teal 2 sUAS is designed for nighttime operations, and is the first sUAS to be equipped with Teledyne FLIR’s new Hadron 640R sensor, providing end users with the highest resolution thermal imaging in a small form factor. It also offers the latest Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) technology, delivering time-critical information and enabling operators to make faster, smarter decisions.
The Teal 2 airframe has been designed as an open platform that can add software features such as Athena AI, and those combined products improve Red Cat’s gross margins.