Desert Wolf unveils riot control drone
Written by Guy Martin, Wednesday, 14 May 2014
The Skunk is designed to control crowds without endangering the lives of security staff. Bright strobe lights and on-board speakers enable operators to communicate with and warn the crowed. If things get out of control the Skunk can use its four paintball guns to disperse or mark people in the crowd. Four ammunition hoppers can load different types of ammunition such as dye marker balls, pepper spray balls or solid plastic balls. Payload capacity of the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) is 40 kg but since the gun assembly weighs around 15 kg the aircraft has an excess of power.
In addition to two high definition day cameras, the Skunk carries a FLIR thermal camera for night vision capability. A camera and microphone on the operator’s station records the operators (a pilot and payload operator) so their behaviour can be monitored. Hennie Kieser, Director of Desert Wolf, said people tend to be less aggressive when they are monitored.
Desert Wolf will soon deliver the first 25 units to customers in the mining industry and the UAV will enter service around June/July. Kieser said it was sad that the mines are in a predicament with strike related violence and this is why the mines are the biggest market for the system. A full system including cameras, ground control station etc. will cost around R500 000.
Kieser said Desert Wold will definitely export the Skunk into Africa, primarily for mining operations, and that South African success will lead to other orders. He felt the best market is not in South Africa because of the current legislation restricting drone use.
READ MOREDesert Wolf becomes FLIR Land Systems distributor for Southern Africa
“I don’t think there’s anything like that in the world,” Kieser told defenceWeb regarding the made in South Africa UAV.
Desert Wolf also offers other UAVs, including the Mozzy, a multicopter for darting game. A live video link enables the operator to monitor the target animal. The company also offers the Wasp helicopter for day and night surveillance.
At the Africa Aerospace and Defence exhibition in September 2012 Desert Wolf launched the Bateleur UAV, designed for long range surveillance missions. Another South African product, it has had a good reception so far, Kieser said, and has been ordered by Namibia, Botswana and Ghana. It has been designed for missions like border and fence patrol, pipeline monitoring etc. It has also been demonstrated for anti-rhino poaching tasks. It features a thermal camera for night operations. Mission radius is 30 km and endurance is one hour with a cruise speed of 100 km/h.
Desert Wolf focuses on providing fully integrated solutions, and specialises in high mobility surveillance solutions. The company started out by selling surveillance trailers but the need for greater mobility expanded the company’s product range, leading to the addition of vehicles (the Scorpion) and unmanned aerial vehicles.
Many of Desert Wolf’s products incorporate FLIR Systems cameras – Desert Wolf is the agent and distributor for FLIR Systems’ military products in southern Africa. The company is working on projects in Botswana and Namibia and Kieser said he would like to put FLIR cameras on Badger armoured vehicles for the South African Army and on the Navy’s patrol boats.
- ISS: Fixing SAPS should start with Phiyega, but can't end there
- East African country orders Springbuck armoured vehicles
- South Africa's govt to appeal court ruling over Bashir
- New arms deal allegations surface
- Fiber Guard receives first South African order
- Speech: Mapisa-Nqakula at Louis Trichard High School
- South African probe blames Lonmin, police, unions for "Marikana massacre"
- Vliegmasjien aims to fly C-Wolf amphibian before year-end
- South Korea commemorates South African airmen
- South Africa cabinet says to review its ICC membership
REMULES, the world's first all-in-one, fully mobile, carbon fibre solar system
by Land Forces Africa, 6 July 2015
Renewable energy solution, ideal for aid organisations and military forces deployed in crisis zones, debuts at LFA 2015.
Excalibur Shelters provides self-lifting, ISO-compliant shipping containers
by Excalibur Shelters, 6 July 2015
Known as the SL-Tainer, the self-lifting and levelling technology gives humanitarian and defence industries versatile mobile platform opportunities.
Ichikowitz Foundation supports efforts to save endangered Saiga antelope
by Paramount Group, 3 July 2015
The doctors' visit to Kazakhstan to investigate the mass die-off of more than 130 000 endangered Saiga antelope is funded by the Ichikowitz Family Foundation and Paramount Group.
Denel book will radically change SA's maths, science, technology landscape
by Denel Corporate, 1 July 2015
"Defence Technology Made Easy" will create awareness about innovation and post-school opportunities derived from maths, science and tech education.
High-stress technical springs
by Atlantis Corporation, 1 July 2015
The company's spring technology can be found in the fields of defence and weapon technology, as well as in machine tool construction.
Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula to open Land Forces Africa
by Land Forces Africa, 1 July 2015
The minister of defence and military veterans, Nosiviwe Noluthando Mapisa-Nqakula, will open the event in Pretoria on 6 July.