Robust Optimization of Mission Effectiveness in Challenging Winds
Agency / Branch:
DOD / NAVY
Due to their relatively small size, small, tactical unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) are capable of flying close to and providing observation/tracking of targets, with relatively small chance of being seen or heard. However, their small size and achievable speeds increases their sensitivity to the effects of atmospheric disturbances such as winds. This increased sensitivity can lead to a significant degradation in their ability to prosecute a given mission or, worse yet, the potential for vehicle upset and loss. The bottom line to the UAV customer in these situations is loss of their "eyes on target" and potential increased risk to forces on the ground. Most operations of UAVs today are forced to make a trade-off between mission effectiveness, maintained by fighting the disturbance, and energy extraction, which is often done by "giving in" to the disturbance at the expense of the mission. However, this trade-off does not have to be a zero-sum game. Wind provides a ubiquitous source of potential energy to enhance UAV flights. Through the research proposed herein, the Mosaic ATM team will create sensor processing and control algorithms that leverage wind energy with consideration of the objectives of the mission to maintain mission effectiveness while increasing endurance.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Research Institution Information:
Mosaic ATM, Inc.
801 Sycolin Road Suite 212 Leesburg, VA 20175
Number of Employees:
University of Minnesota
450 McNamara Alumni Center
200 Oak Street S.E.
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Nonprofit college or university