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Terminal Guidance for Autonomous Aerial Refueling

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N68936-10-C-0115
Agency Tracking Number: N101-073-1825
Amount: $69,835.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N101-073
Solicitation Number: 2010.1
Solicitation Year: 2010
Award Year: 2010
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2010-07-10
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2011-01-09
Small Business Information
727 Airport Boulevard
Ann Arbor, MI 48108
United States
DUNS: 197187602
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Woman Owned: Yes
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Yes
Principal Investigator
 Glenn Beach
 Sr Engineer
 (734) 668-2567
Business Contact
 Charles Jacobus
Title: President
Phone: (734) 668-2567
Research Institution

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) are serving an ever increasing role in U.S. military operations. There are many reasons why UAVs are becoming the platform of choice over manned air assets for many missions. UAVs can be used to perform dangerous missions that would be too risky with a human pilot and can operate for long durations without concern about pilot fatigue. However, overall mission length is affected by both pilot issues and the need for fuel, the UAV can only carry a certain amount before needing to be refueled. The probe and drogue method has been used successfully to refuel both manned and unmanned aerial vehicles in flight, effectively extending the maximum mission length for these platforms. Typically, refueling of UAVs is done with a human pilot teleoperating the aircraft. However, the long-term goal for UAVs (and the focus of much current research) is to make them operate autonomously. Therefore, there is a need for a system that allows a UAV to autonomously rendezvous with a refueling tanker and then correctly insert the refueling probe into the drogue. Cybernet proposes to build such a system by leveraging our exiting tracking visual tracking technologies

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

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