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AeroVironment launches integrated drone platform

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AeroVironment, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVAV), a global leader in unmanned aircraft systems for both military and commercial applications, today launched its new integrated commercial information solution featuring the innovative Quantix drone and Decision Support System (DSS). Available spring 2017, these technologies allow growers to gain actionable crop health insights that can improve farming efficiencies and profitability.

The AeroVironment Quantix drone will give professional crop advisors and growers the same air superiority, trusted certainty and security that the company is known for as the leading drone supplier to the U.S. Department of Defense.

Quantix is an innovative drone featuring powerfully simple, automated flight with an operator-in-the-loop and a unique, hybrid design that allows the craft to launch vertically and transition into horizontal flight, maximizing aerodynamic efficiency and range.

Operating Quantix is as simple as 1-2-3:  First, to plan a mission, the operator simply traces their finger over a map displayed on the tablet controller screen to identify an area of interest.  Second, the system guides the operator through a simple, automated pre-flight check to ensure a safe, reliable mission.  Third, the operator simply presses the “fly” button and Quantix does the rest, including performing a detailed built-in test procedure, optimizing its flight path for maximum coverage, launching, and then landing vertically when its mission is complete after scanning hundreds of acres with its color and multispectral sensors. Quantix is designed to be the first practical commercial drone combining the advantages of vertical liftoff, for safe launch and soft landing, and horizontal flight to acquire data quickly and easily.  It also includes “land now” and “return home” command safety features for complete control.

At the heart of AeroVironment’s Commercial Information Solutions business is the Decision Support System (DSS). AeroVironment’s DSS uses advanced research and algorithms to produce high-resolution datasets and analysis of fields and vineyards in agriculture, and bridges, railroad tracks, pipelines, roads and many other valuable assets. It has easy-to-use mobile interfaces with secure cloud-based data storage. Developed with proprietary algorithms, the AV DSS is the foundation for powerful data processing, integrating multi-dimensional data streams from multiple types of sensors and data collection tools and capable of securely storing large amounts of image data for historical trend analysis.

“Every day, in unforgiving environments around the world, our military customers rely on the actionable intelligence our systems deliver to help them proceed with certainty,” says Wahid NawabiAeroVironment chief executive and president. “Today, this mission-critical insight becomes available to precision agriculture in a powerful new way. Quantix can automatically scan hundreds of acres per flight and alert growers to anomalies via smart text messages while the AV DSS securely stores the data and provides an intuitive platform for deeper image analysis.”

Nawabi added, “The growers we have been working with told us they want to focus on running their businesses, not on becoming drone experts. Working with several land grant universities and their extension programs, we created a powerfully simple drone and agronomic analytics system for farmers. Now, they will benefit from our industry-leading technologies that have been proven by countless American and allied troops working in the harshest environments on the planet.”

AeroVironment (Booth #401) will begin delivery of Quantix in the Spring of 2017.  Visit avinc.com/CIS to stay informed with exclusive updates and see a video of the Quantix in operation.  Register here to receive updates and for the opportunity to reserve your own Quantix system once pre-orders begin February 2017.