Sky Diver - Air Deployed Unmanned Aircraft System

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-12-C-7273
Agency Tracking Number: F083-006-0016d
Amount: $1,599,981.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2008
Solicitation Topic Code: AF083-006
Solicitation Number: 2008.3
Small Business Information
3774 E. 43rd Place, Tucson, AZ, -
DUNS: 793087110
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: Y
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Keith Brock
 Vice President
 (520) 790-5484
Business Contact
 Jessica Brock
Title: President
Phone: (520) 790-5484
Research Institution
ABSTRACT: Air Force operations require more real-time situational awareness and sensor deployment from extended stand-off distances and for longer durations. Sensor data obtained from current gunship operations is limited by stand-off distance constraints, the resolution of onboard sensors, and the inability to see below the weather to the objective area. A system solution is needed that can increase the capabilities of current Air Force operations by supporting varying sensor capabilities safely and in an affordable manner. An Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) that can be deployed from a manned host aircraft is an ideal solution to this capability gap. An air-launched UAS can capitalize on the long-range, fast response capabilities of the host aircraft while also providing agile and minimal detection sensor data collection, signaling, ground sensor delivery, and threat elimination after deployment from the host aircraft. The proposed design will fill the current capability gap for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) and strike capabilities immediately and affordably by employing an assortment of Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) sub-systems, modular payload support, a well-supported host aircraft integration and deployment plan, and innovative manufacturing techniques. BENEFIT: Military and civilian personnel could utilize the proposed air deployed UAS as an additional tool in the performance of their services. The UAS integrates seamlessly into the existing manned aircraft infrastructure and therefore complements the capabilities of the military and civilian users. For instance, the UAS developed under this effort could be deployed from a manned aircraft and be flown into high risk areas to aid soldiers during night operations. The UAS would permit the manned aircraft to stay out of harms way by providing persistent surveillance over a specific area or along convoy routes. This system can also loiter along border regions to collect data for Homeland Security groups with limited manned aircraft assets and limited situational awareness. Moreover, the UAS could be deployed from a US Forest Service manned platform to search for ideal locations for fire breaks or from Search and Rescue helicopters to locate hikers lost in rugged terrain. In summary, the highly versatile, small UAS has the potential to perform a variety of missions over an extended period of time, complementing the existing capabilities of manned aircraft.

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

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