On April third, Common Atomics Aeronautical Programs, Inc. (GA‑ASI) flew its SkyGuardian Remotely Piloted Plane (RPA) within the skies above Southern California as a part of a joint flight demonstration with NASA. GA-ASI was chosen to take part in NASA’s Programs Integration and Operationalization (SIO) exercise, which incorporates a number of flight demonstrations specializing in various kinds of Unmanned Plane Programs (UAS) and their respective flight environments. GA-ASI and NASA have labored collaboratively since 2014 to show the security of flying giant UAS within the Nationwide Airspace System (NAS).
GA-ASI demonstrated methods wherein SkyGuardian can be utilized for quite a lot of business and public providers functions, utilizing its onboard sensors. Providers featured within the demo included inspections of a whole lot of miles of rail, energy line, communication and canal infrastructure, agriculture monitoring and topological surveys, in addition to wildfire and flood monitoring.
“Our work with NASA is opening the eyes of regulators to the security and utility of unmanned plane programs within the efficiency of sure duties for public and business good,” mentioned Linden Blue, CEO, GA-ASI. “Our plane have already performed necessary roles throughout disaster administration occasions comparable to wildfire containment. Our airborne sensors can see by way of thick smoke, enabling us to tell floor personnel in regards to the areas of fireplace traces to allow them to deploy assets effectively. The SIO demonstration highlighted how the plane can be utilized for a lot of different civilian and business missions.”
After taking off from GA-ASI’s Grey Butte Flight Operations Facility close to Palmdale, Calif., SkyGuardian flew by way of the NAS in Southern California in direction of Yuma, Ariz. whereas being operated by a distant pilot primarily based at Grey Butte. The pilot used the GA-ASI-developed Detect and Keep away from System (DAAS) to supply situational consciousness of air site visitors close to the UAS. The DAAS features a Visitors Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS II) utilized in manned plane that fly in civil airspace. It additionally has an air-to-air, “Due Regard” Radar to supply detection and monitoring functionality of any close by plane which can not have lively transponders. Utilizing the DAAS, the distant pilot was in a position to “see” and navigate round airborne site visitors similar to an airborne pilot.
“NASA’s objective to assist speed up routine UAS operations into the nationwide airspace has moved one step nearer with this profitable flight demo,” mentioned Mauricio Rivas, UAS integration within the NAS venture supervisor at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Analysis Heart. “Our efforts with Common Atomics and our different SIO trade companions will assist business UAS transfer nearer in direction of certification.”
GA-ASI’s know-how companions for the demonstration embrace Honeywell (provided the TCAS II for the DAAS), and Collins Aerospace for the Command and Non-Payload Communications (CNPC) datalink radios, which is a part of the Command and Management datalinks system.
Common Atomics Aeronautical Programs, Inc. (GA-ASI), an affiliate of Common Atomics, is a number one designer and producer of confirmed, dependable Remotely Piloted Plane (RPA) programs, radars, and electro-optic and associated mission programs, together with the Predator® RPA sequence and the Lynx® Multi-mode Radar. With greater than six million flight hours, GA-ASI supplies long-endurance, mission-capable plane with built-in sensor and knowledge hyperlink programs required to ship persistent flight that permits situational consciousness and speedy strike. The corporate additionally produces quite a lot of floor management stations and sensor management/picture evaluation software program, affords pilot coaching and assist providers, and develops meta-material antennas. For extra info, go to www.ga-asi.com.