UAV Navigation provides flight-control solution for VTOL platforms

May 13, 2021  - By

UAV Navigation has developed a flight-control solution specifically for vertical-take-off-and-landing (VTOL) fixed-wing drones.

Interest in using VTOL platforms has grown in the past few years, according to the company. A hybrid between fixed-wing and rotary-wing platforms, VTOLs provide operators with versatility.

The company’s fixed- and rotary-wing development teams worked together on the flight-control solution. Technological capabilities from other solutions — referenced navigation or the development of missions in environments without GNSS signals and under threat of jamming attack — have been incorporated in an organic way to facilitate a complete and reliable system.

The hardware developed by UAV Navigation has the MIL-STD-810F and MIL-STD 461F certification, proving the system has been tested by an independent body that certifies its extraordinary behavior in adverse conditions.

“Our extensive experience with fixed-wing and rotary-wing platforms allows us to know the strengths and challenges that these platforms face as a mission is performed,” said Miguel Ángel de Frutos, CTO of UAV Navigation. “Taking this as a starting point, we have managed to develop a specific solution for VTOL platforms that not only has the same technological capabilities as our existing solutions, but also enables missions to be carried out with the highest possible security.”

One of the main challenges with VTOL platforms is the transition from vertical to horizontal flight and vice versa. UAV Navigation’s solution facilitates and automates this critical moment as much as possible, while optimizing battery use. A series of safety and emergency procedures allow the aircraft to always reach a safe landing zone and overcome possible errors in the engine.

An adaptable VTOL software architecture allows users to customize and configure the solution through the ground control station.

Partnership with AnsuR Technologies

logosUAV Navigation is partnering with AnsuR Technologies to enable streaming high-definition (HD) video from small UAVs carrying a 200-kbps satcom terminal.

With the partnership, the Asmira software solution fro AnsuR provides the ability to optimize sending video and images for satellite communications. Asmira, together with the Cobham Aviator UAV 200 and the antenna pointing solution Polar-300, provided by UAV Navigation, can deliver cost-effective high quality video transmission for small satellite platforms.

Integrated into the platform’s onboard network, UAV Navigation’s Polar AHRS delivers the attitude and steering information of the platform so the Cobham device can establish contact with the satellite.

The Polar AHRS, a device designed to meet the demanding needs of the aeronautical sector, includes all the necessary sensors in a compact device to provide precise information to the servos in a gimbal or an antenna, enabling its control. Once a stable satellite link is established, the Asmira software delivers HD-quality video at rates down to 100 kbps and can support SD quality below 50kbps.

The partnership enables good-quality streaming for long-range surveillance, infrastructure monitoring and search-and-rescue missions where videos are critical.

About the Author: Tracy Cozzens

Senior Editor Tracy Cozzens joined GPS World magazine in 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.