A converted Alpin UAV (unmanned air vehicle), a joint project of TITRA, a Turkish engineering company, and UAVOS, a researcher, developer, and manufacturer of advanced products in the unmanned systems industry, has completed its first successful flight in Turkey.
The joint project, which is based on the manned Heli-Sport Italian CH7 helicopter, was started in 2019 to addresses the growing UAV cargo delivery market and includes the conversion as well as maintenance and training programmes.
The Alpin UAV is designed to meet the specific, unique and advanced requirements of Turkey with its special security industry interests to operate the unmanned system in a variety of complex scenarios in both civilian and security fields. The converted helicopter is also indispensable for the UAV logistics industry to deliver cargo to hard-to-reach areas without airfields.
The UAV is described as a long-range, heavy-lift unmanned helicopter capable of carrying up to 160kg with a range of up to 840km and includes a wideband satellite communication channel from its command and control station — a valuable feature, particularly for operations in remote areas. The Alpin unmanned helicopter is designed to withstand severe weather conditions, carry multiple payloads, and transmit real-time information to the forces and decision-makers in the field.
The Alpin’s system autopilot has features and advantages such as fully autonomous take-off and landing, remote ground controls network capability, auto-rotation landing capability and high-efficiency flight control, based on TECS (Total Energy Control System).
Selman Dönmez, TITRA CEO said: “Designing a long-range unmanned helicopter from scratch with a new platform takes many years to complete, so from the beginning our goal was to convert a well-known reliable helicopter platform to an unmanned system.
“Together with our partners at UAVOS, we have accomplished our target in a very short time. Our joint efforts and partnership with UAVOS for the creation of the ALPİN UAV, focuses on growth and shared opportunities and we believe it will make a strong, long-term impact on our sector.”
TITRA CTO Mücellid Kiraz said: “We have partnered with UAVOS to design and deliver innovative and cost-effective solutions for our customers. With this important and strategic partnership in joining our efforts on converting a manned aircraft into a UAV, we believe we are positioned to create significant value for our customers and shareholders.”
Aliaksei Stratsilatau, CEO and lead developer at UAVOS, said: “With Covid-19 the demand for UAV cargo, crucial to the delivery of medical supplies, medicines, food, and other necessary equipment, is on the rise.
“I would like to thank our partners at TITRA in Turkey for their trust in UAVOS. These technical capabilities and the proven track record in partnering with a strong company such as TITRA enables UAVOS to manage its conversion of manned aircraft into UAV programmes as a solid, forward-looking business.”
Dmitry Romanov, business development at UAVOS, said: “Our joint project with TITRA for the development of an advanced, reliable and effective long-range heavy-lift VTOL UAV for the Turkish market is a definite breakthrough for local and global unmanned industries. We believe that such a form-factor reveals new concepts of operation bringing benefits to industrial and governmental customers.”