Command and Control Software for Single-Operator Multiple UAS Missions

Period of Performance: 05/06/2016 - 05/05/2018

$730K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Opto-knowledge Systems, Inc.
19805 Hamilton Ave Array
Torrance, CA 90502
Firm POC
Principal Investigator

Abstract

Existing command and control (C2) paradigms for UAS platforms are extremely limited and cumbersome, requiring at least a single operator per UAS, if not more than one operator for each UAS (as is the case with many scientific and commercial UAS platforms). For example, UAS platforms such as the ScanEagle or the Sierra require at least one operator to handle the routing / navigation tasks for the aircraft and another operator to handle and operate the mission-specific payload. In this setting, the UAS platforms actually become a force-divider instead of a force-multiplier. The requirement of multiple operators for each individual UAS platforms is problematic for commercial applications where the high cost of human operators would inhibit many key applications such as package delivery from becoming financially viable. To address these issues, Opto-Knowledge Systems Inc (OKSI) and Analytical Graphics Inc (AGI) are joining forces to design, demonstrate, and deliver a robust multiple Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) semi-autonomous command and control tool that will enable a single human operator to manage multiple UAS platforms concurrently. Though there has been significant research into the single-operator multiple UAS control paradigm, there are currently no existing commercially available tools for this application. This work is aimed at shoring up this gap by creating the Single-Operator Multiple Autonomous Vehicle (SOMAV) command and control tool that will be integrated with AGI�s Systems Tool Kit (STK) software and sold commercially at the end of the Phase-II program.