ISR At The Edge – TNO, AEC Skyline Collaborate On On-board Edge Computing
In mid-October many months of preparation on the groundbreaking ISR At The Edge project by the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research TNO and AEC Skyline culminated in a series of successful live demonstrations for a Netherlands MoD audience. The tests were conducted at 't Harde during one of the Royal Netherlands Army – Fire Support Command's exercises.
Providing on-board high performance processing coupled with automatic target recognition software and AI algorithms, TNO's Edge Computing System (TECS) demonstrated it is capable of delivering real time detection and identification of targets and events from live EO, IR and GMI datastreams. These datastreams originated from a L3Harris WESCAM pod and a SIGINT sensor respectively with the latter two sensors being mounted on AEC Skyline's GA8 Airvan testbed aircraft during the trials. With Havision's video encoding technology enabling high quality low latency full motion video, TECS generated information and imagery were fused into a single coherent picture, hereby providing actionable intelligence which was sent to the ground control station that was used.
TNO's latest ISR At The Edge trials are part of wider technological efforts aimed at shortening the sensor-to-shooter loop during actual military operations. Planned future tests by TNO will see an even higher degree of autonomy being implemented.
The October series of trials were monitored from AEC Skyline's ground control station by one of the company's operators. Sensor and monitoring data from AEC Skyline and test results from TNO were shared with the assembled audience consisting of various Netherlands MoD officials at an adjacent ground location in 't Harde. During these latest trials, air-ground connectivity was ensured using the Wave Relay mobile ad hoc networking (MANET) MPU5 radio from AEC Skyline's partner company Persistent Systems.