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High Performance UAV System Design Based on High Power Microturbine Technology

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 32521
Amount: $99,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: N/A
Award Year: 1996
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
45 Manning Road,
Billerica, MA 01821
United States
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 David Stickler
 (508) 663-9500
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution

A radical, high performance system design concept for UAV missions is proposed. Its characteristics derive directly from propulsion and power generation capabilities inherent in microturbine technology under development at MIT. The proposed vehicle configurations is an oblate spheroid, giving a high package volume with sufficient fuel capacity for hover duration of about one hour. Thrust from multiple microturbines is used directly for propulsion, maneuver and hover, with control implemented via pulsed on-off operation of selected engines. The result is a High Performance Aerial Vehicle (HIPERAV), carrying a large instrument package, which incorporates sensor, data transmitter, and mission/vehicle control functions. This is conceived as an interchangeable plug-in unit, with programmable capability. Electrical power is taken from one or more of the propultion turbines, resulting in very high power for data transmission. This implies both a high data rate capability, and potential for satallite interfacing, despite the limited antenna size and efficiency. Specific approaches for implementation of this concept, and their mission and vehicle implications are outlined in the proposal. Based on this, a preliminary system definition study of vehicle and mission utilization is proposed. It will address mission and hardware interpendence, and define key technology limitations requiring Phase II development.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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