Pipistrel aircraft, despite having an engine, were originally designed as gliders; this means they are able to perform many tasks with the engine switched off, completely silent over the target, with a very low IR signature and radar reflection. Because of very low drag and power requirements, they can fly very long distances, have extreme endurances and can reach extreme altitudes.
These advantages have made the Pipistrel Aircraft also a perfect Surveyor Platform, a leading choice all over the world by civil authorities, special agencies, surveillance services and military operations. and anywhere a specially designed, individually customized platform is needed. The Pipistrel Surveyor family is based on the very successful SW airframe, the very same aircraft that NASA awarded first prize in both at the Personal Air Vehicle challenge in 2007 and at the General Aviation Technology challenge in 2008 and the foundation for EASA Type certified SW 121.
The Pipistrel Surveyor can be supplied as manned surveillance aircraft, UAV baseline platform, or an optionally piloted aircraft.
Pipistrel Surveyors are ideal for a wide variety of aerial tasks because of their specific design characteristics and they have many advantages:
• They are much less expensive to operate and use unleaded automotive fuel or Avgas
• They can take-off and land on grass or unprepared surfaces, not just hard runways
• They are very quiet, more than 50% quieter than a normal small aircraft
• In the air, they look like an inconspicuous sport/recreational aircraft and they are not treated suspiciously
• When piloted their high wing offer ideal views of the ground through enormous transparent doors