MEDIA RELEASE: may 2024 | Sydney, Australia

Visionary Machines Have Drones in Sight with Major Defence Contract Win

Sovereign Australian computer vision company Visionary Machines wins Defence innovation contract for Counter Drone and Robotic and Autonomous Systems (RAS) technology.

Visionary Machines — Autonomous Counter Drone and RAS Detection

Visionary Machines — Autonomous Counter Drone and RAS Detection

Visionary Machines has been awarded an Innovation contract to develop their PandionTM Counter Drone and RAS Passive 3D Multispectral Perception Sensor technology as result of a winning submission to Army Innovation Day 2023. Army Innovation Day is a Department of Defence initiative that sees the Advanced Strategic Capabilities Accelerator (ASCA) partner with the Australian Army to challenge industry in solving complex problems for the Land force.

Visionary Machines tendered for and was successful in securing a Phase 2 Technology Demonstration contract applicable across all three C-RAS capability themes, including Counter Aerial, Counter Ground and Counter Littoral and Riverine RAS.

Visionary Machines’ PandionTM C-RAS Passive 3D Multispectral Perception System is an optical (camera-based) equivalent to a radar system for drone detection with multiple vehicle and stationary array applications, capable of tracking targets including Uncrewed Aerial Systems, Uncrewed Ground Systems and Uncrewed Waterborne Systems at significant distances from ground level or near ground level, further advancing technology that will pay a critical role in safeguarding our nation.

“Where technological warfare is so rapidly reshaping the battlefield, this is an important investment in sovereign Australian technology and the disruptive enhancement of our Defence capabilities. Our systems ability to detect without being detected and to see in all weather and lighting conditions are critical technology differentiator for Defence and further cements Visionary Machines as a global leader in computer vision,” says Mr. Sonny Foster, CEO of Visionary Machines.

The contract will see Visionary Machines demonstrate game-changing sensor technology capable of detecting targets at significant distance, while operating with stealth. This passive capability means the system avoids detection, an increasingly critical requirement on the modern battlefield. This sets the PandionTM sensor system apart from traditional radar, or laser range finding, both of which emit signals making them susceptible to detection and targeting.

Critically the PandionTM system has the unique capability to “see” in challenging conditions, such as extreme weather, low visibility environments, including low-light and complete darkness by combining visible light and infrared light for highly accurate 3D multispectral vision perception.

The Department of Defence through ASCA is connecting and streamlining the defence innovation system, to drive capability development and acquisition pathways at speed and more effectively harness and coordinate the innovation ecosystem. Army in partnership with ASCA executed Army Innovation Day in 2023, which afforded Visionary Machines the opportunity to pitch their novel C-RAS solution, showcasing the strength of sovereign Australian technology.

“Visionary Machines was very pleased to showcase our PandionTM sensor technology at Army Innovation Day 2023. We answered the call from Defence for innovative Counter Robotic and Autonomous Systems (C-RAS) that can detect, identify, target and RAS threats to protect the Land Force. To then be one of the companies selected to proceed to Phase 2 Demonstration is testament to the innovative drive of our specialised computer vision team,” says Mr. Foster.

Key Points

• Sovereign Australian SME Visionary Machines has won a $2.5m Army Innovation Day contract for their passive optical anti-drone detection system

• The 2023 AID event called for counter aerial Robotic and Autonomous Systems (RAS), counter ground RAS and counter littoral riverine RAS and attracted 65 submissions

• Visionary Machines has secured the largest contract, $2.5 million of the $5.3 million budget with their application successful on all three fronts for their passive optical anti-drone detection system:

1. Counter aerial Robotic and Autonomous Systems (RAS)
2. Counter ground RAS
3. Counter littoral riverine RAS

• This is the first major contract win under the leadership of recently appointed CEO Sonny Foster formerly of Collins Aerospace / RTX, who is driving the commercialisation of Visionary Machines' advanced passive, multi-spectral optical technology systems

• The contract supports Army’s 2022 Robotics and Autonomous Systems Strategy that was a result of Army Innovation Day 2023

• Army innovation day is held annually by the Department of Defence partnered with the Advanced Strategic Capabilities Accelerator (ASCA) to solve complex problems for the Land force

• Visionary Machines produces optical sensor systems for autonomous mobility, surveillance and inspection.

About Visionary Machines

Visionary Machines creates vision systems for safer and smarter machine autonomy.

Visionary Machines simplifies autonomous systems, empowering them to see and intelligently interact with their environment, with superior camera-based vision and 3D spatial awareness.

Staffed by a group of world-leading computer vision and robotics experts, Visionary Machines is a sovereign Australian company headquartered in Sydney with a research arm based in Oxford, United Kingdom.

Download the press release

Aerospace Management Team Lands at Visionary Start-up

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Chelsea Reid
Chief Marketing Officer
Email: [email protected]

Office number: +61 472 733 265

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