recommended reading

Air Force plans ‘see-and-avoid’ system for drones

Air Force

The Air Force wants to turn pioneering research conducted by its research laboratory in Rome, N.Y., in 2005 into production-ready technology that would help aircraft avoid midair collisions. The service is pursuing the technology as the Federal Aviation Administration gears up to allow the widespread use of unmanned aircraft in domestic airspace by 2015, a move opposed by pilots and airlines who believe unfettered use of drones could pose serious aviation hazards.

The Air Force Aeronautical Systems Center at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio announced a need for industry to help develop an airborne sense-and-avoid system to allow drones to operate safely in domestic airspace. The center plans to host an industry conference in November or December.

The Air Force Research Laboratory’s Multisensor Integrated Conflict Avoidance/Joint Optimal Collision Avoidance system has successfully demonstrated using sophisticated software to help avoid airborne collisions.

The Aeronautical Systems Center said it want to develop a “sensor-agnostic” see-and-avoid system, but said it expected the first generation would be based on technology tested by the Research Laboratory and widely used in the commercial airline industry. These included the Traffic Collision Avoidance System, installed in aircraft to monitor nearby airspace, and the Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast system, which transmits Global Positioning System-derived locations of aircraft and is the core of FAA’s Next-Generation Air Transportation system.

The Airline Pilots Association International, in comments on an FAA rule-making process on the use of drones in domestic airspace, recommended they be equipped with ADS-B and the Southwest Pilots Association urged the use of TCAS.

The Aeronautical Systems Center said it initially plans to install the airborne sense-and-avoid system on Global Hawk drones. A Navy Global Hawk drone crashed on Maryland’s Eastern Shore in June, the seventh known crash since 1999 of a Global Hawk, an aircraft originally developed for the Air Force.

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • It’s Time for the Federal Government to Embrace Wireless and Mobility

    The United States has turned a corner on the adoption of mobile phones, tablets and other smart devices, outpacing traditional desktop and laptop sales by a wide margin. This issue brief discusses the state of wireless and mobility in federal government and outlines why now is the time to embrace these technologies in government.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • A New Security Architecture for Federal Networks

    Federal government networks are under constant attack, and the number of those attacks is increasing. This issue brief discusses today's threats and a new model for the future.

    Download
  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Software-Defined Networking

    So many demands are being placed on federal information technology networks, which must handle vast amounts of data, accommodate voice and video, and cope with a multitude of highly connected devices while keeping government information secure from cyber threats. This issue brief discusses the state of SDN in the federal government and the path forward.

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.