The CALMAR Crop Condor

Like its namesake, the CALMAR Crop Condor is not exactly an attractive bird to look at. However, it fulfills its task very well. With this aircraft, we are able to acquire high-resolution aerial images in a very timely fashion. Whereas satellite and full-size aircraft must be scheduled days, weeks, or sometimes months in advance, the Condor can fly with a minimum of preparation, allowing us to complete time-critical imagery applications like tile line location maps, plant health and yield mapping from aerial imagery more effectively. In addition, due to the low altitude that the Condor flies at (typically 1000' or less.), we can often fly when conditions would prevent image acquisition using other platforms.

The Condor is piloted by an experienced R/C pilot. It has a GPS receiver onboard that transmits its location back down to a ground-based laptop for navigation purposes. The Condor also has a gyro stabilization system that is used to stabilize the aircraft for image acquisition.

Vital Statistics (Aircraft):

  • 10 foot wingspan
  • 5 foot nose to tail
  • 18 lbs ready to fly
  • V-tail design
  • Wings separate and fold for convenient transport in most pickups or SUVs
  • Electric powered
  • Rugged, low maintenance construction
  • Flight times in excess of 45 minutes per charge
  • Capable of aprox. 40 acres per image
  • Capable of altitudes in excess of 1250'
  • Gyro stabilization system

Vital Statistics (Imaging System):

  • Dual 5 megapixel digital cameras
  • Both infrared and color images
  • Simultaneous image captures
  • 6 inch typical pixel resolution @ 1000'

One last preflight check...


Click here to see a small movie of an early test flight launch (.avi format).

Sample color infrared image taken using the Condor. Infrared and color images were combined to create this color infrared image.

We are now taking requests for image acquisition and image processing using the Condor.

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