Red Cat Holdings, Inc. , a leading military technology company that integrates robotic hardware and software to enhance warfighter capabilities, has announced its partnership with Athena AI as the computer vision partner for the new Teal 2 military-grade drone.
Athena, a military decision-support company with AI-enabled technology, has licensed its proprietary computer vision architecture to Red Cat for the Teal 2. The computer vision solution enables high-speed object tracking and in-depth data exploitation at slower speeds. Athena’s solution is capable of identifying weapons, various objects, and poses at night, as well as IFF markers like Cyalume HALOs and IR beacons.
Athena has spent over three years curating and analyzing military night-fighting footage, including thermal and low-light camera systems, to develop computer vision architecture for warfighting after dark.
The integration of Athena’s technology will enable the Teal 2 to support Danger Close Fire Missions at night. The drone can detect, recognize, and geolocate the Forward Line of Own Troops (FLOT) in comparison to the enemy, allowing for precision and safe fires on the target.
In addition to Athena, Red Cat has partnered with other technology companies such as Teledyne FLIR, Tomahawk Robotics, Reveal Technology, and Immervision for the Teal 2. The drone is equipped with FLIR’s new Hadron 640R sensor optimized for nighttime operations, making it the first sUAS to feature the sensor.
Red Cat has already received an order from U.S. Customs and Border Protection for 54 units of the Teal 2. In February, a Red Cat delegation led by CEO Jeff Thompson visited NATO countries to explore how the Teal 2 can potentially assist Ukrainian forces in countering Russian forces during night operations.
Athena also announced its first export sales to the U.S. Department of Defense in January and is currently demonstrating its technology at the Avalon 2023 Australian International Airshow from Feb. 28 to March 5.
“Teal 2 is a mission-focused military drone, and our partnership with Athena enables us to integrate the very latest computer vision technology,” said Jeff Thompson, Red Cat CEO. “Athena’s ability to track objects at night means our drone can deliver crucial intel to warfighters and commanders, providing rapid decision-making support.”