10 JUL 2024 15:01 | PR Newswire

The company's battlefield-tested surveillance technology is poised to transform how armed forces manage complicated and multi-discipline reconnaissance missions

VILNIUS, Lithuania, July 10, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Granta Autonomy, an innovative startup specializing in fully autonomous UAVs for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions, today announced the successful completion of its EUR 1 million seed funding round. ScaleWolf VC, the leading Lithuanian dual-use tech VC Fund and Accelerator, led the round, with participation from Brolis Defence and HFL holdings. The new capital will enable Granta Autonomy to accelerate the development and production of its cutting-edge lightweight surveillance and reconnaissance UAVs, micro gimbals, and digital Datalink software, which its team has personally tested over Ukraine's front lines.

Granta Autonomy has been developing reconnaissance remote-controlled UAV aircraft, lightweight gimbals, and its unique Datalink software since 2015. Founded by former military engineers Gediminas Guoba and Laurynas Litvinas, the company now provides NATO forces across Europe with its range of hand-launched Hornet UAVs while also providing a range of partners with its proprietary, ultra-reliable, lightweight micro gimbals, which are the lightest direct drive gimbals on the market. Granta Autonomy's micro gimbals feature a powerful camera system that allows for clear daytime image capture at long distances (up to 5 kilometres) and provides vital thermal vision for nighttime operations, ensuring mission success around the clock.

"The traditional battlefield is evolving, and Western armies require robust, reliable, and flexible solutions. Granta Autonomy is committed to ensuring our systems can be readily manufactured across Europe, reducing reliance on external sources. Today's funding enables us to ramp up our production capacity to deliver the large-scale deployments Europe needs," said Gediminas Guoba, founder and CEO of Granta Autonomy. "However, our focus goes beyond just numbers; our team works directly with soldiers on the battlefield, testing our products and software in combat zones and collaborating on solutions that excel in the toughest conditions. This battlefield experience, valued by our Western partners, fuels our mission to revolutionize drone reconnaissance for global militaries."

Granta Autonomy's latest UAV, the Hornet XR, is a small, hard-to-detect, hand-launched mini reconnaissance UAV with several critical features for covert missions. With a simple throw take-off and a silent flight lasting up to 3 hours, it can cover vast distances (up to 160 km) undetected. Pre-programmed missions ensure autonomous operation, even in radio silence or GNSS-denied environments. The ultra-lightweight aircraft lands itself using a deep-stall method, making it easy to retrieve in tight spaces, and its compact, modular design allows for convenient transport in a car trunk.

Granta Autonomy's powerful but lightweight GS-214X and GS-218X micro gimbal systems enable Hornets and other third-party drones to capture sharp images from long distances (up to 5 kilometres) during the day and include a thermal camera for missions at night. Granta Autonomy's Digital Datalink software ensures the gimbal integrates with most Ground Control Station (GCS) software.

Guoba adds: "The Hornet XR exemplifies our design philosophy, which is rooted in the expertise of our military UAV operators and engineers, delivering industry-leading flight time, simple operation, and rugged durability, which brings greater efficiencies, lower costs, and unmatched reliability to complex, multi-disciplinary missions. The same goes for our micro gimbals; when we started, there were no gimbals on the market for small UAVs like ours; now, we are producing the lightest direct drive gimbals on the market."

Edvinas Kerza, ScaleWolf VC's Managing Partner and former Vice Minister of Lithuanian MoD, adds: "Since we met Gediminas and the team, we have been impressed by the groundbreaking technology and vision of the Granta Autonomy team. Their innovative approach to developing surveillance and reconnaissance technology is second to none and has the potential to revolutionize the way armed forces manage complicated and multi-discipline reconnaissance missions. We proudly support their mission and look forward to seeing their autonomous UAVs impact the battlefield over the coming years."

After Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, Vilnius-based Granta Autonomy started supplying its UAVs to the Ukrainian front. Today, the Ukrainian army operates a battery of Granta Autonomy UAVs funded by the Lithuanian and other European defence ministries. The company also provides its technology to NATO forces across Europe.

Notes to editors:

Granta Autonomy is an innovative and experienced engineering company with a focus on the development and production of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), integrations, and components for intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance (ISTAR), search and rescue, and loitering munitions.

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Media contact: Nick Jones

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