WorldWide Tech & Science. Francisco De Jesùs.
The Phoenix prototype. The aircraft has 5.5 meter wingspan. It can reach 15,000 feet and 140 miles per hour.
Ecuadorian AirForce launches UAV (drones) made in the country, to monitor natural disasters.
When the alarm sounds at the airport Chachoan in Ambato, the UAV-0 of the Center for Research and Development of the Ecuadorian Air Force (Cidfae) and is ready to take off on a mission of 20 minutes in the air,the UAV (by 'Unmanned Aerial Vehicle') UAVs are operating through autopilots, and flight tested Cidfae aircraft designed and built in the country.
The aim is to provide a communication tool to monitor natural disasters. On a track of 1 800 meters, Captain Victor Enriquez oversees the UAV mission-0: rising to 300 meters and automatic pass.
The captain explained that this prototype, 4, 40 meters, wingspan is on track to achieve takeoff, flight and landing autonomously. So far, only the navigation, which can reach up to an hour-automatic.
On the track, the electronics engineer Uwe Nickelsen pilot serves as a platform for controlling the movement of the UAV-0 in air. "The task of a pilot takeoff platform is secure and prevent the aircraft from danger on the ground."
Colonel Edgar Jaramillo, Cidfae director, said that the aircraft is also controlled by the 'shelter', a mobile station with three consoles. One of them is the system of guidance, navigation and control, which oversees the projected flight. According to Jaramillo, this monitoring can ensure the survival of the ship and the fulfillment of the mission in the air.
In another console can display the aircraft payload, ie equipment. Captain Enriquez says the idea is that the Cidfae prototype aircraft has available for national service: engineers provide the platform and the client is the one who appoints the load.
For example, one could use the aircraft to transmit real-time images of the volcano Tungurahua conditions. In the 'shelter' is also one antenna pointing system that follows the aircraft to always remain linked.
When the UAV-0 fulfills its mission, the UAV prepares Phoenix. Captain Enriquez says that this prototype was born by the need for larger aircraft and higher lifting weights. The UAV-0 weighs 15 kilograms and the Phoenix, 25 kg.
Colonel Jaramillo adds that this aircraft was the first drone in Latin America after its first flight in 1998, changed its aerodynamics and increased new aircraft concept. Now the Phoenix, with 5.5 meter wingspan, has greater stability to land on short runways, as it has vortex generators, such as the Airbus.
After 20 minutes of flight, the Phoenix landed. Jaramillo says his sprained wing allows slower landing on short runways.
Its top speed reaches 140 mph and can fly up to 15,000 feet. Like the UAV-0 two-hour autonomy is achieved only in navigation. When the two aircraft complete their mission, the central tower of the airport Chachoan communicates nationally Izamba the area is clear.
The military is removed from the track and continue with their work in the shop. The lieutenant Miguel Baca is an aeronautical engineer and led the construction of the prototype Falcon, which will span 11 meters and a weight of 50 kg lift.
It is hoped that this aircraft can fly autonomously 10 hours and reach 18,000 feet. Like the other two prototypes, the Falcon is carbon fiber and will be ready in February 2013. In Cidfae is also the country's first airship
The Condor is 36 meters and is about to fly. Later this year, the airship will be available. Does your utility? could be located in a disaster area to build a telecommunications network in place.
You could also install a camera to check an area affected nationwide. Colonel Jaramillo adds that Condor UAV prototypes and can also work together. "With the scope of the airship (150 km) could extend the travel of unmanned aircraft to operate as a repeater antenna".
Captain Enriquez says his autonomy can achieve 12 hour flight. On a tour of the Cidfae, the Defense Minister Miguel Carvajal, congratulated the team of researchers from the Centre and motivated him to accelerate final renders, as the country needs to prototypes that can support natural disaster in the country. Captain Enriquez says the Cidfae is a "prototyping center", which will assess the needs of customers and provide theoretical and practical training for mass production in the country.
Source: Diario EL Comercio Ecuador