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Innovative Solutions for Multi-Rotor Flight Endurance

Description:

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Weapons 

OBJECTIVE: Identify and demonstrate technology for unmanned multi-rotor air vehicles which improves payload capacity, flight endurance, and maneuverability of compact airframes through innovative technology solutions to enable weaponized multi-rotor systems. 

DESCRIPTION: Multi-rotors have many advantages as weaponized systems and technology development continues to improve the performance of these systems. This topic seeks to mature technology to allow a small, simple, and robust airframe to carry a 5 lb payload for more than 25 minutes, enter a building through common-sized doors and windows, and maneuver inside. 

PHASE I: Phase I focuses on the design of an innovative concept. Activities conducted in this phase include performance analysis, technical feasibility, design maturation, and a plan for a practical deployment. Limited component testing is encouraged to guide the development of modeling and simulation tools. This phase should culminate in a prototype design which will be constructed in Phase II. 

PHASE II: Using the results from Phase I, Phase II focuses on construction of an operational multi-rotor prototype to establish gains made in payload capacity, flight endurance, and maneuverability. Validation of the modeling and simulation tools should be conducted through experimentation. Multiple demonstrations are encouraged in different environments to demonstrate robustness of the airframe. In this phase the innovative research and transition options should be captured in a detailed design report. 

PHASE III: This Phase focuses on implementing any lessons learned through Phase II testing into a “V2” airframe and commercialization of the developed technology through coordinating with current DoD multi-rotor manufactures and the commercial market. 

REFERENCES: 

1: http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/drones/iros-2013-should-quadrotors-all-look-like-this

2:  https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/fd76/99b39a5a76b0ca4835b9d87a033270348c93.pdf

3:  http://acl.mit.edu/projects/vpitch_quad.html

4:  http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/7392315/?reload=true

KEYWORDS: Multi-rotor, Quadrotor, Flight Endurance, Payload Capacity, Maneuverability, Airframe Design 

CONTACT(S): 

Ryan Sherrill (AFRL/RWWV) 

(850) 883-1914 

ryan.sherrill.1@us.af.mil 

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