Malawi Announces Africa's 1st Humanitarian Drone Testing Corridor

domingo, 18 de diciembre de 2016



Alfred Mtilatila, director of the Department of Civil Aviation, said the launch of the testing corridor is largely supported by UNICEF-Malawi as a pilot project using unmanned aircraft systems, or UAS, for transporting dried blood samples for the early diagnosis of HIV in infants.

"We would like to establish a designated area where we will permit different types of unmanned aerial vehicles so that we will be able to come up with the right type of vehicles which can be used for different purposes," Mtilatila said.


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THE UNMANNED FRONTIER: Drone entrepreneurs take advantage of new FAA rule - Evening News and Tribune [feedly]

Evening News and Tribune
THE UNMANNED FRONTIER: Drone entrepreneurs take advantage of new FAA rule
Evening News and Tribune
Now, hopeful drone entrepreneurs can take a test quizzing them on their knowledge of airspace classifications and emergency procedures. If they pass, they can be like Zahnd: enterprising users of unmanned aircraft systems, or drones. "To me, it was a ...

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Northrop's New Combat Drone Could Outclass Boeing F/A-18, Lockheed F-35 - Motley Fool [feedly]


Motley Fool

Northrop's New Combat Drone Could Outclass Boeing F/A-18, Lockheed F-35
Motley Fool
One year ago, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) tapped Northrop Grumman to build it a TERN prototype, capable of launching from and landing on small naval warships. Just six months later, before TERN had even conducted its ...

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Is War in Space Inevitable? Maybe Not [feedly]

Is War in Space Inevitable? Maybe Not
http://www.spacewar.com/reports/Is_War_in_Space_Inevitable_Maybe_Not_999.html

 -- via my feedly newsfeed

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US appeals WTO ruling over prohibited subsidies [feedly]

US appeals WTO ruling over prohibited subsidies
https://leehamnews.com/2016/12/16/us-appeals-wto-ruling-prohibited-subsidies/

 -- via my feedly newsfeed

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Two Aeroflot Airbus A330 clipped wing tips at Moscow-Sheremetyevo Airport

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All U.S. Navy Super Hornets and Growlers grounded after incident injured aircrew [feedly]

The U.S. Navy has temporarily grounded all its F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler jets after a ground incident at Whidbey Island. The U.S. Navy Naval Air Forces commander has suspended flight operations of both Super Hornet and Growler types after a canopy incident involving an EA-18G from the VAQ-132 "Scorpions" caused unspecified injuries to […]
https://theaviationist.com/2016/12/18/all-u-s-navy-super-hornets-and-growlers-grounded-after-incident-injured-aircrew/

 -- via my feedly newsfeed

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BAE Unveils Amphibious Combat Vehicle Prototype | SK’s DAPA to Begin Developing Taurus-Class Missile | Beijing Gets Early Delivery of Four Su-35s [feedly]

BAE Unveils Amphibious Combat Vehicle Prototype | SK's DAPA to Begin Developing Taurus-Class Missile | Beijing Gets Early Delivery of Four Su-35s
http://www.defenseindustrydaily.com/bae-unveils-amphibious-combat-vehicle-prototype-sks-dapa-to-begin-developing-taurus-class-missile-beijing-gets-early-delivery-of-four-su-35s-035447/

 -- via my feedly newsfeed

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BAE as started testing UAS to evaluate how autonomous air vehicles can be integrated in the UK airspace.

BAE Systems has started testing unmanned aircraft technologies to evaluate how autonomous air vehicles can be integrated in the UK airspace.
http://www.airforce-technology.com/news/newsbae-begins-trials-of-unmanned-aircraft-technologies-in-uk-5699073


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Microsatellites to study heart of hurricanes launched from L1011 aircraft



press releases from NASA and Orbital ATK



A Message From CYGNSS Principal Investigator Chris Ruf
Posted on December 15, 2016 at 4:41 pm by Bob Allen.
We have successfully contacted each of the 8 observatories on our first attempt. This bodes very well for their health and status, which is the next thing we will be carefully checking with the next contacts in the coming days.

It is an amazingly rewarding feeling to spend such an intense and focused time working on CYGNSS and then, in a matter of just a few hours, have the entire constellation suddenly come to life. I am excited (and a little exhausted) and really looking forward to diving into the engineering data in the coming days, and then into the science data in the weeks to follow.

Go CYGNSS!!

–Chris





Mission Update - December 15, 2016
Our Pegasus rocket successfully launched NASA's Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS) from our L-1011 Stargazer aircraft this morning at 8:37 a.m. EST, and completed payload deployment at 8:52 a.m. To learn more about the CYGNSS mission, visit NASA's blog here.
About the Mission

The three-stage Pegasus XL will be used to deploy eight small satellites for NASA’s Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS) mission into a Low-Earth orbit. Pegasus is carried aloft by Orbital ATK’s Stargazer L-1011 aircraft to approximately 40,000 feet over the Atlantic Ocean, where it will be released and free-fall for five seconds before igniting its first stage rocket motor. With its unique delta-shaped wing, Pegasus will deliver these satellites into orbit in a little over 10 minutes.

CYGNSS, developed by the University of Michigan, will probe the inner core of hurricanes to learn about their rapid intensification. CYGNSS is designed to remedy the inability of current remote sensors to see through the heavy rain in the inner core of a hurricane or to observe changes in the storm over short periods of time.

For mission updates, follow us on Twitter @OrbitalATK and on Facebook. Images of the launch campaign are available on our Flickr and Instagramaccounts.





About Pegasus

On April 5, 1990, Orbital ATK began a new era in commercial space flight when our Pegasus rocket was launched from beneath a NASA B-52 aircraft in a mission that originated from Dryden Flight Research Center in California. In the decades since its maiden flight, Pegasus has become the world's standard for affordable and reliable small launch vehicles. It has conducted 42 missions, launching 86 satellites.

This patented air-launch system provides customers with unparalleled flexibility to operate from virtually anywhere on Earth with minimal ground support requirements. Pegasus launches have been conducted from six separate sites in the U.S., Europe and the Marshall Islands, the first time a space launch vehicle has demonstrated such operational flexibility. Pegasus XL is a category 3 NASA-certified vehicle.

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New drone dives like a bird and leaps like a flying fish



press release, photo and video




Engineers have developed a prototype drone that dives like a gannet and launches like a flying fish, to collect water samples


https://youtu.be/G-d3WSC3Vrw





Gannets (left) are the largest seabirds in the north Atlantic and hunt fish by diving from height into the sea at up to 60 miles per hour. Flying fish can make powerful, self-propelled leaps out of the water and into the sky, where their wing-like fins help them to glide over considerable distances.

The team from Imperial College London have taken inspiration from these behaviours in their prototype AquaMAV robot. The AquaMAV is designed to collect samples in situations such as monitoring water quality in reservoirs and measuring changes in ocean salinity to gauge the effects of climate change.
By examining the diving qualities of gannets and the leaping behaviour of flying fish, we can make an aerial drone that needs less on board control, making it more robust and more affordable to manufacture.
– Rob Siddall
Department of Aeronautics


Currently, researchers generally have to use boats to manually collect water samples. AquaMAV is designed to be rapid, efficient, and more cost effective than this method. It can also carry out tests in dangerous situations such as in disaster zones or from locations currently inaccessible to people, such as deep under the ocean.

One of the current drawbacks for small scale flying robots is that they generally lack sufficient power to make the transition from water to the air. The team in today’s study say they have potentially overcome this problem with their drone by mimicking the way flying fish make ‘impulsive’ leaps from the water.

The AquaMAV uses carbon dioxide, which is stored internally, to propel itself out of the water. In the air, retractable wings are deployed to help it glide, much in the same way that fins help flying fish.

The drone only weighs 200 grams and can currently achieve speeds of around 30 miles per hour from a starting point beneath the water. It can make the aerial leap even if conditions on the surface are rough. The researchers say AquaMAV can currently fly around five kilometres to and from an analysis. The team say the aerial range would enable those analysing the samples to be at a safe distance away from a potentially hazardous situation.

The research, part funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, is published in the journal Interface Focus.

Dr Mirko Kovac, the director of the Aerial Robotics Lab in Imperial’s Department of Aeronautics, said: “During an emergency scenario such as a major oil leak an AquaMav could fly and dive into isolated patch of water, where it could collect samples or loiter and record environmental data. The vehicle could then perform a short take-off and return to its launch site to submit samples for analysis. This would enable a fast, targeted response that could not be matched by the current methods.”

Previous studies have, for example, demonstrated the effectiveness of water sampling using drones that have large multi-rotational propellers. This approach is more complex, relying on very accurate sensing and control systems to maintain the drone in the air while sample probes are carefully lowered into the water to collect specimens.

The team say the advantage of their small, fixed-wing AquaMAV is that it can travel faster and over longer distances compared to hovering vehicles. The plunge diving approach, which mimics how the gannet dives, reduces the need for highly accurate control. This means that the AquaMAV would be more cost effective to manufacture because it needs less gadgetry, and more could be bought and deployed, to give a more in-depth analysis.

Rob Siddall, lead author and postgraduate from Imperial’s Department of Aeronautics, added: “We are really excited by our AquaMAV prototype. We believe we may have overcome the power density problem which makes launching out of the water so challenging for small drones. Nature often has an elegant way of solving engineering challenges. By examining the diving qualities of gannets and the leaping behaviour of flying fish, we can make an aerial drone that needs less on board control, making it more robust and more affordable to manufacture.”

The researchers are currently looking to collaborate with oceanographers and various water authorities to take their testing to the next stage. The aim is to deploy the robot in a wide variety of scenarios, to test the robot’s limits in waves, wind and weather, and examine the physics of high speed dives into water. An additional propulsion system is also under development to make the AquaMAV fully aquatic, capable of long periods of submarine operation.

"Wind and water tunnel testing of a morphing aquatic micro air vehicle", published Friday 16 December in the journal Royal Society Interface Focus.

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It's a bird, it's a plane, it's a ... feathered drone? [feedly]






Bioinspired morphing wings for extended flight envelope and roll control of small drones
http://rsfs.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/7/1/20160092


A drone has been equipped with feathers to increase its precision during flight. The bio-inspired device can spread or close its wings while flying, making it easier to maneuver and more resistant in high winds
http://actu.epfl.ch/news/a-drone-that-flies-almost-like-a-bird/


There is much to learn from the natural world when it comes to robotics, and there may be no better exponents of this than the folks in the Laboratory for Intelligent Systems (LIS) at Switzerland's École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. For their latest bio-inspired project, the scientists have crafted a drone with a feathered, shape-shifting wingspan that allows it to fly fast, turn sharply and endure strong winds. Kind of like a bird.
.. Continue Reading It's a bird, it's a plane, it's a ... feathered drone?
http://newatlas.com/drone-feathered-wings/47000/


Bird-like drone uses feathers for a more precise flight path
http://www.spacewar.com/reports/Bird-like_drone_uses_feathers_for_a_more_precise_flight_path_999.html

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Facebook freed to reveal details of drone crash / NTSB: Turbulence Downed Facebook’s Internet UAV



Following the first full-scale testing of its solar-powered Aquila drone back in July, Facebook described the event a success. Well, turns out that wasn't entirelytrue, with the aircraft crashing on the landing and the right wing taking on a bit of damage. This was obviously less than ideal, but the upside is Facebook now has some thoughts on how to better build a drone fit for the purpose of bringing the entire world online.

.. Continue Reading Facebook freed to reveal details of drone crash
http://newatlas.com/drone-crash-facebook/47002/




NTSB: Turbulence Downed Facebook’s Internet UAV

Wind gusts beyond the capability of the autopilot are blamed for the structural failure of Facebook’s Aquila unmanned aircraft on final approach after its June 28 first flight at Yuma Proving Ground in ...

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Latest Northop Grumman E-2D Advanced Hawkeye makes maiden flight [feedly]

Northrop Grumman's newest version of the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye has made its maiden flight. The latest iteration of the carrier-borne turboprop airborne early warning aircraft – designed for the US Navy starting in the late 1950s – the new Hawkeye now has the ability to refuel in the air from a tanker aircraft. This allows it to remain on station longer and operate at longer range.

.. Continue Reading Latest Northop Grumman E-2D Advanced Hawkeye makes maiden flight









Northrop tests first E-2D with in-flight refueling

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Production of Il-96-300 and AN-148. [feedly]

Production of Il-96-300 and AN-148.
http://englishrussia.com/2016/12/18/production-of-il-96-300-and-an-148/

 -- via my feedly newsfeed

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