Business

October 24, 2012

Aerosonde small UAS log 168 flight hours in the Antarctic

AAI Unmanned Aircraft Systems, an operating unit of Textron Systems, a Textron Inc. company, announced Oct. 22 that its Aerosonde(R) Small Unmanned Aircraft System logged 168 flight hours in the frigid, harsh climate of Antarctica, supporting meteorological research by the University of Colorado’s Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences and Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

Each Aerosonde aircraft was outfitted with meteorological instruments to measure pressure, temperature, relative humidity, winds, net radiation, surface temperature and ice thickness.

The University of Colorado team, led by Dr. John Cassano, is studying Antarctic polynyas, or areas of open water surrounded by sea ice. To learn more about this phenomenon, the crew directed the Aerosonde aircraft through low-level flights around 300 feet above the water’s surface to measure wind speed, temperature and moisture in an area called Terra Nova Bay. Flights also included spiral ascents and descents to capture the atmosphere at various heights over the polynyas. Launching from an ice runway, the Aerosonde aircraft conducted beyond-line-of-site operations of up to 18 hours in temperatures as low as minus 37 degrees Celsius and winds up to 81 miles per hour.

“The crew and aircraft have really proven themselves in one of the harshest, least-forgiving environments possible for unmanned aircraft system operations,” said Cassano.

This was the second successful deployment AAI Unmanned Aircraft Systems has conducted with the University of Colorado team. In 2009, a six-week exploration of the katabatic winds present on the coast of Antarctica allowed researchers to generate highly detailed, three-dimensional maps to help study their relationship to sea ice formation.

“Once again, Antarctica has proven to be an extremely challenging environment; however, this small group of dedicated professionals has demonstrated what is possible at the extreme edge,” said Nick Logan, flight operations manager for AAI Unmanned Aircraft Systems’ Australia-based strategic business Aerosonde Pty Ltd, which led the 2012 and 2009 Aerosonde SUAS deployments.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines April 18, 2014

Business: Lockheed to Lose 17 F-35s Under Automatic Pentagon Cuts - Pentagon will cut 17 of the 343 F-35 fighters it planned to buy from Lockheed Martin in fiscal 2016 through 2019 unless Congress repeals automatic budget cuts, according to a new Defense Department report. DOD looking for ways not to break MH-60R helo deal - The...
 
 

News Briefs April 18, 2013

U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan at 2,177 As of April 15, 2014, at least 2,177 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan as a result of the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,802 military service members have died in Afghanistan as a result...
 
 
LM-F35-hours

F-35 fleet surpasses 15,000 flying hours

The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fleet recently surpassed 15,000 flight hours, marking a major milestone for the program.  “Flying 15,000 hours itself demonstrates that the program is maturing, but what I think is e...
 

 
nasa-cassini

NASA Cassini images may reveal birth of new Saturn moon

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has documented the formation of a small icy object within the rings of Saturn that may be a new moon, and may also provide clues to the formation of the planet’s known moons. Images taken w...
 
 

NASA completes LADEE mission with planned impact on Moon’s surface

Ground controllers at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., have confirmed that NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer spacecraft impacted the surface of the moon, as planned, between 9:30 and 10:22 p.m., PDT, April 17. LADEE lacked fuel to maintain a long-term lunar orbit or continue science operations and was intentionally sent...
 
 
Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Kepler telescope discovers first Earth-size planet in ‘habitable zone’

Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech Kepler-186f resides in the Kepler-186 system about 500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus. The system is also home to four inner planets, seen lined up...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>