Northrop Grumman Employees 2016 Quad Cup Innovation Challenge

2016-08-18

Northrop Grumman Employees 2016 Quad Cup Innovation Challenge
Northrop Grumman conducted a mini-drone Olympic-type competition as a way to further foster innovation within the firm and advance small-drone ISR and attack technology.

The rules were similar to basketball and constructed drones were evaluated according to technical, management and cost criteria.

Four teams, each with multiple vehicles in play at one time, competed to score points by passing and shooting a ball through one of their opponent’s three circular goals, Northrop statements said.

“We started with around 13 teams, pared it down to 8, then to 4. We wanted to ensure that the teams not only had a sound technical baseline and could demonstrate the ability to perform the required technical tasks but that they could do so on schedule and on budget. Methods to control the quads, collision avoidance, mechanical design, and shooting mechanisms were all presented for consideration among other technical aspects,” T.J. Ortega, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems, Autonomous Systems Public Relations, told Scout Warrior.

Many competing small drones were commonly used quadcopter configurations with advanced sensor and maneuverability characteristics.

Small drone technology is an increasing vital area of inquiry among military weapons and platform developers, given the increasingly rapid pace of technological progress in areas such as miniature sensors and autonomy.

Air Force and Pentagon researchers, for example, are currently advancing mini-drone swarm technology designed to deploy large groups of small drones to jam enemy air defenses, conduct ISR missions of function themselves as weapons. Swarms of mini explosives, for example, could be used to blanket, destroy and explode enemy targets without putting human at risk of counter-attack.

Along these lines, developers are working to develop algorithms which allow groups of mini-drones to work in tandem without running into each other. Multiple small drones would naturally be more difficult to defend against given that they would presents large groups of small maneuverable targets.

Also, sensor technology is evolving to the point where increasingly miniaturized EO/IR sensors are able deploy on small drone platforms and conduct reconnaissance missions from increasingly long distances.

The so-called Quad Cup competition was, by design, concluded on the eve of the 2016 summer Olympics and involved more than 1,600 Northrop employees. A team called SlytherING ultimately won the competition.

After three rounds demonstrated displays of teamwork and technology, Slyther1NG won the trophy. Over the past six months, more than 300 employees and interns representing 17 teams competed to make the final cut and show off their technology at UC San Diego, a Northrop statement said.

Each team developed their own unique structural designs, software, and autonomous flight ability.

Four teams, each with multiple vehicles in play at one time, competed to score points by passing and shooting a ball through one of their opponents three circular goals.

Region:  USA and Canada
Contry:  USA
Category:  UAV


Microsoft Tests Self-Flying Gliders in Rural Nevada

2017-08-22
Microsoft Tests Self-Flying Gliders in Rural Nevada
Microsoft is already thinking about self-flying airplanes. The tech giant tested such technology in Hawthorne, 130 miles south of Reno, last week with the help of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and the Nevada Institute for Autonomous Systems.

RADA Gets $8M US Military Counter-UAS Contract

2017-08-22
RADA Gets $8M US Military Counter-UAS Contract
RADA Electronic Industries Ltd. has announced it had received a strategic first order for dozens of Multi-Mission Hemispheric Radars (MHR) from the US Military. Totalling over $8 million, this order will be delivered during 2017.

US Navy Wants Drones and AI to Repair Airfields Fast

2017-08-14
US Navy Wants Drones and AI to Repair Airfields Fast
The U.S. Navy is looking for a drone that can fly over a damaged airfield and come up with a plan to get planes back in the air quickly, the head of Navy Expeditionary Combat Command said Tuesday.

Raytheon Further Develops Multi-Mission Coyote UAS

2017-06-21
Raytheon Further Develops Multi-Mission Coyote UAS
Raytheon is developing a “Block 2” update of the Coyote tube-launched unmanned aircraft system (UAS) it acquired more than two years ago. The aim is to produce a low-cost, multi-mission-capable air vehicle that users will ultimately dispose of once it completes a mission.

Ship Agency to use Drones for Ship Deliveries

2017-05-26
Ship Agency to use Drones for Ship Deliveries
Wilhelmsen Ships Service (WSS) is launching a pilot program to study the use of unmanned aircraft systems for delivering supplies to ocean vessels.

US Air Force Research Lab to Extend Aircraft ISR Range

2017-05-23
US Air Force Research Lab to Extend Aircraft ISR Range
The US Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) is developing a tube-launched unmanned aircraft system (UAS) that can be deployed from an AC-130 gunship, or similar aircraft, and provide video that will rival that provided by its own sensors.

Firefighting Drone Debuts in Summer in USA

2017-05-15
Firefighting Drone Debuts in Summer in USA
Spain-based start-up DRONE HOPPER has designed a heavy-duty firefighting drone that the company says offers “safety, flexibility and efficiency over traditional fire suppression technology.”

AeroVironment Unveils Snipe  New, Stealthy Nano Quadrotor UAS

2017-05-11
AeroVironment Unveils Snipe New, Stealthy Nano Quadrotor UAS
AeroVironment, Inc. has officially unveiled the new Snipe Nano Quad, a miniature (“Class 0”) and field-rugged unmanned aircraft system designed to support close-range intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions. The first U.S. government customer delivery of 20 Snipe systems took place in April.

NASA Selects Black Swift for Volcano Ash Monitoring

2017-05-11
NASA Selects Black Swift for Volcano Ash Monitoring
NASA has awarded Black Swift Technologies, a specialized engineering firm, a contract to develop and deliver a purpose-built scientific platform to explore volcanoes in order to improve air traffic management systems and the accuracy of ashfall measurements.

FAA Evaluates Drone Detection Systems at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport

2017-05-02
FAA Evaluates Drone Detection Systems at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport
Last week, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and its partners are conducting detection research on unmanned aircraft (UAS) – popularly called drones at Dallas/Fort Worth International (DFW) Airport.The DFW evaluation is the latest in a series of detection system evaluations that began in February 2016. Previous evaluations took place at Atlantic City International Airport; John F. Kennedy International Airport; Eglin Air Force Base; Helsinki, Finland Airport; and Denver International Airport.


Back to the list