American company Fairweather Science for the first time used an unmanned aerial vehicle for piloting ships through channels between the ice in the Arctic seas. It is reported portal N+1.
As written by Aviation Week, a drone was used for reconnaissance of ice conditions and search for wide passages in the ice. Using the apparatus of the ships were able to pass through the waters of the Beaufort sea and Chukchi sea.
Today for the posting of small craft through the ice in the Arctic use icebreakers or special aircraft. Both methods pilotage are quite expensive. This wiring through the ice with icebreaker assistance is still relatively time consuming and not possible in all Arctic locations. The UAV allows to carry out the court through the ice faster and cheaper than existing methods.
The Arctic campaign of the company Fairweather Science took place in July 2016, but it has become known only now. His goal was to raise anchor on anchorage research vessels. In total, the campaign lasted two weeks. During this time, the UAV has completed five reconnaissance flights with a total duration of 19 hours.
For reconnaissance drone was used vertical take-off and landing Flexrotor, developed by the American company Aerovel. Its weight is about 23 pounds. The device is equipped with touch-stabilized Alticam Vision turret in the bow. The drone can reach speeds of up to 84 kilometres per hour and stay aloft for up to 15 hours.
Drones Flexrotor created under the scheme “tailsitter”, the aircraft of vertical take-off and landing on the tail. The tail of the drones made in the form of quadropod, each of the pillars in flight, which is pressed against the other, forming a single beam. The propeller unit is made flexible and is fixed just behind the bow with the camera.
In February this year, the company Aerovel has tested a new software to manage drones. During the test, the two devices Flexrotor performed simultaneous rise of several aerobatic figures and fit.