Small UAS Platform for NWS Missions

Period of Performance: 05/29/2016 - 11/29/2016

$120K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Toyon Research Corp.
6800 Cortona Drive Array
Goleta, CA 93117
Firm POC
Principal Investigator

Abstract

NOAA and in particular, the National Weather Service (NWS), have an unmet need of a cost feasible small Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) which can support multiple sensing missions which will either directly save lives or indirectly save lives through improved weather forecasts, warnings and public alerts. NOAA has enumerated two dozen valuable applications of small UAS for itself and partners. Toyon proposes to demonstrate and continue the development of its Waptor small UAS for these NWS missions. Waptor was originally developed for environmental sensing in difficult to reach locations, and in difficult conditions. The Waptor UAV, with its unique hybrid Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL)/fixed-wing configuration combines the maneuverability aspects of a multi-rotor drone with nearly the flight endurance of a traditional fixed wing sailplane. Waptor goes further with a waterproof platform and rugged composite construction which allow it to operate in difficult conditions. The high thrust to weight ratio required for a VTOL craft allows Waptor to battle stronger winds. Waptor is designed to be low cost and easy to integrate custom sensor packages with a modular payload bay, featuring connectivity integrated by open-source software, minimizing cost of ownership.