Poland’s WZL-2 used the recent MSPO defence industry exhibition in Kielce to unveil its Dragonfly vertical take-off and landing loitering munition system.
With a maximum take-off weight of 5kg (11lb), the quadcopter is designed for combat operations, including in urban areas, and carries a warhead to conduct precision strikes against targets up to lightly armoured threats.
The Dragonfly has a maximum flight time of 25min at speeds up to 43kt (80km/h), operating at a ceiling of 1,600ft, with a line-of-sight control limit of 5.4nm (10km).
After locating a target and actuating its video-tracking mode, the loitering weapon can conduct an attack mission, even continuing this if the communication link is lost.
WZL-2 notes that the Dragonfly – which has a rotor span of 70cm (5.8ft) once assembled – and its entire operating system can be carried by one soldier in a backpack. The company is promoting the design for use by groups such as special forces personnel, and remotely piloted air system programme director Tomasz Gugala says it is close to launching mass production for Poland’s military forces.
The company also used the show to exhibit its PGZ-19R tactical unmanned air vehicle, which is optimised for tasks including imagery collection and signals intelligence-gathering. It is waiting for Warsaw’s defence ministry to order five systems – each consisting of five air vehicles and related equipment – plus an option for another seven.
With a 5.5m wingspan and 3.2m vehicle length, the UAV has a maximum take-off weight of 80-90kg, including a 20kg payload such as an electro-optical/infrared sensor and synthetic aperture radar.
Deployed using a pneumatic launcher, the PGZ-19R cruises at 65-97kt, and has an operating ceiling of 16,400ft. Mission endurance is up to 12h.