In a market heavily saturated with similar aircraft from industry giants, the Parrot ANAFI USA may not catch your attention. And yet, despite the fierce competition, it has seen widespread use with a long list of federal and defense entities. What makes the ANAFI USA well suited for the enterprise/defense mission set? More importantly, what advantages does it offer over its counterparts? We answer these questions in this article and discuss why the ANAFI USA may be one of the best public safety drones available.
Despite what may be circulating around on the internet, the Parrot ANAFI is not a drone with night vision capabilities, nor is it a drone with infrared camera. It does, however, bring thermal capabilities to the air. Below are some general specifications to get us started:
- (2x) 21MP cameras (wide, telephoto)
- 32x zoom
- 4K video
- FLIR Boson® 320×256 IR camera
- 5-axis hybrid stabilization
- Size: 228x101x76 mm
- Weight: 501 grams
- Flight Time: 32 minutes
- Weather Rating: IP53 dust and water resistant
- Speed: 14.7 m/s
- Service ceiling: 6,000 m
The ANAFI Line: Model Comparisons
It’s important to point out that the name ANAFI USA represents the Parrot’s aircraft series and one of the models within that series designed for public safety and defense operators.
This is the series lineup: the ANAFI USA, the ANAFI USA GOV, and the ANAFI USA MIL. All models offer the same flight performance, camera specifications, and encryption. However, they differ in the accessories and communication systems they provide. Furthermore, the GOV and MIL models are the only aircraft of the three that are Blue UAS-listed and NDAA-compliant.
ANAFI USA GOV: Everything offered by the ANAFI USA plus an 8-inch SkyController USA.
ANAFI USA MIL: Everything offered by the GOV plus an AES 256 encrypted Microhard radio communication system and TOGA (Tactical Open Government Architecture) compatibility.
The ANAFI Camera
The gimbal-stabilized payload consists of three cameras.
- A wide-angle EO (electro-optical) camera
- A telephoto EO camera
- A thermal camera
Both EO cameras have apertures that open up to f/2.4 and use a Sony sensor capable of shooting 4K video. The telephoto camera enables the 32x zoom, allowing pilots to highlight specific details at a distance.
Thermal cameras are quickly becoming standard on public safety aircraft. These systems enable pilots to operate at night, in low visibility, or detect hotspots on a fire ground. Equipped with a FLIR Boson sensor, the ANAFI captures thermal images at a 320p resolution.
Until this point, it would seem that the ANAFI USA is just like every other aircraft in its sUAS category. Certainly comparable to other drones, the ANAFI does offer agencies something many of its competitors don’t — data security.
One of the considerations of government and defense entities is how they will secure their information from data breaches or hacks. And given the context of the current political climate, cybersecurity concerns are being addressed across many initiatives, including UAS programs.
Responding to these needs, Parrot has incorporated several features in their aircraft to protect user data.
The connection between the controller and the aircraft is secured by WPA2 authentication and protection, including a 128-bit encryption key. Connection links are unique to every aircraft and controller pair. Additionally, every key is customizable by the user.
Encrypted SD Card
In addition to the network connection, the SD cards carrying your photo and video data come with the option to be encrypted, protecting your data in the event the aircraft is lost or stolen.
Data Management Protocols
Speculations about what companies do with that information have been a primary reason behind the cybersecurity concerns, driving various entities to consider where they source their aircraft. Parrot addresses these concerns by not collecting flight data by default. Instead, it only does so only when authorized by the user.
For agencies that employ additional software as part of their UAS programs, the Parrot ANAFI is supported by a long list of software, including DroneDeploy and Pix4Dreact. Both are popular solutions for rapid mapping, producing accurate 2D and 3D representations. Compatibility with these programs increases the versatility, and therefore the value, of the Parrot ANAFI.
Compact and dependable, the ANAFI USA enables operators to fly wherever missions take them, backed by the security of DoD-compliant system architecture. For agencies subject to Blue UAS directives, the Parrot ANAFI USA is an excellent option. If you are interested in this aircraft, contact a FLYMOTION representative or learn more about Parrot drones at flymotionus.com.
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