Aerostat Communications Relay from Unmanned Surface Vehicle

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N00024-13-P-4589
Agency Tracking Number: N131-039-0518
Amount: $79,806.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2013
Solicitation Year: 2013
Solicitation Topic Code: N131-039
Solicitation Number: 2013.1
Small Business Information
PO Box 202, West End of Second Street, Essington, PA, -
DUNS: 793042243
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Richard Billingslea
 Senior Systems Engineer
 (610) 521-6115
Business Contact
 Gregory Piasecki
Title: Director of Commercializa
Phone: (610) 521-6115
Email: gregorypiasecki@dragonflypictures.c
Research Institution
The CommLift Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) is an alternate and novel approach to providing long range, over-the-horizon, communications for surface vessels; it uses a tethered electric UAV to carry a radio payload to suitable altitude, rather than an aerostat. The tether provides power from an unmanned surface vessel (USV) to the UAV and also bi-directional communications between them. Since electric power is supplied from the surface, the UAV endurance is unlimited. The essential innovations are (1) an autonomous UAV to be tethered to takeoff, follow above, and land on, a USV, (2) to provide UAV power and communications over the tether, and (3) paired UAV autopilots (one at the surface and one on the UAV) to allow the UAV to follow USV movements and to control UAV takeoff and landing. The Phase I performance metrics are demonstration of suitable power and communications over a>525 ft. tether, tethered takeoff and landing of a multirotor UAV from a 30 knot moving vehicle and control of a high voltage brushless DC motor"s speed and design of tether control system and surface based support package.

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

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