Novadem NX70 is a micro reconnaissance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) by French aerial robotics manufacturer Novadem.
The micro UAV is used in surveillance, reconnaissance, search and rescue (SAR), public safety, private security and firefighting missions.
The French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) placed an order with Novadem for more than 50 NX70 micro surveillance and reconnaissance UAVs in June 2019. The drones were delivered to the DGA by September 2019.
Novadem displayed the UAV during the Milipol 2019 defence exhibition in November 2019.
The French Navy’s Marseille Naval Fire Battalion (BMPM) acquired four NX70 micro UAVs from Novadem in January 2020.
Novadem NX70 design and features
NX70 is a micro quadcopter based on a four-legged airframe. The forward and rear body of the UAV is fitted with extended arms integrating rotor hubs. Each rotor hub is installed with a two-bladed propeller driven by an electric motor.
The UAV measures 51cm long, 51cm wide and 13cm high. The maximum take-off weight of the aircraft is 1kg.
NX70 can be easily integrated into larger platforms, such as weapon systems, to deliver improved operational flexibility.
The operational capabilities of the unmanned aircraft were tested in various theatres of operation worldwide. Based on the inputs from customers, the UAV is further developed into NX70 Block 2 configuration, which offers improved image stabilisation, direction, recognition and identification (DRI) performance and night vision capabilities, as well as an increased radio range of more than 5km.
Payloads of NX70
NX70 carries a bi-spectral payload, including an ultra-high resolution electro-optical day camera and thermal camera.
The micro UAV can lift and drop different devices, such as a medical kit, smoke grenade and a jammer, making it the only multi-role micro-drone available for defence applications.
Navigation and communications of NX70 micro drone
The UAV uses GPS navigation, automatic return to home or return to pilot, an automated flight control system and automatic emergency procedure for safe operations.
The NX70 system is compatible with military map formats, as well as coordinates including military grid reference system (MGRS), universal transverse mercator (UTM) and Deg-Min. The digital terrain model ensures passive target geo-referencing in all conditions without the need for a rangefinder.
Radio communications are supported by a fully digital video and data link, which transmits data in dual-frequency civil bands and long-range selectable bands.
The UAV stores no information on board and employs datalink encryption and access by identification procedures to ensure the safety of data gathered during missions.
Novadem NX70 ground control station
The UAV is operated by a ground control station (GCS) embedded with software to support the navigation, flight control and data processing operations.
The data link transmitter can be detached from the GCS to allow the operator to pilot the NX70 from inside or outside of a vehicle. The GCS software ensures the accuracy of data captured with a 3D terrain model.
Performance of Novadem NX70 micro UAV
The micro drone has a standard range of 1km and a maximum range of 5km. It can endure airborne for up to 45 minutes. The NX70 can fly even in harsh environments including wind speeds up to 65km/h, rain, dust, and hot and humid weather conditions. It can operate in temperatures varying between -15°C and +45°C.
The Novadem NX70 micro drone is carried in a tactical transport case that can hold two UAVs. The compact backpack ensures high mobility of the system during missions. The NX70 takes a minute to shift from stowed to operational.