By Kalwinder Kaur
AeroVironment recently declared the deployment of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). With this UAS, aerial communication potential for the Federal Communications Commission’s Deployable Aerial Communications Architecture (DACA) Notice of Inquiry (NOI) proceeding will be demonstrated.
Based on aerial platform technology, the DACA NOI is investigating the ability to rapidly restore the communications subsequent to natural or man-made disaster that affects existing communications networks.
By conducting demonstrations with its series of hand-launched small UAS for airborne communication relay, AeroVironment will effectively support the DACA program. AeroVironment’s small UAS can be rapidly assembled and launched within five minutes and can be launched from 45 min to 2 hours based on the respective model. It can be operated using a hand-held control unit and ensures easy transport in a backpack or vehicle.
AeroVironment’s small UAS’ standard component, Digital Data Link (DDL), along with third party communication payloads will allow demonstrations, through which users can communicate with data and voice over long distances. Using each unmanned air vehicle and ground station, the DDL allows encrypted, beyond-line-of-sight voice, video, data and text communication, in addition to ensuring broadband network connectivity for the DACA demonstration. The small UAS will transport off-the-shelf communication relay payloads that will provide hand-held public safety and emergency response radios for effective interaction beyond-line-of-sight or over long distances, without using ground-based antennas or repeaters.
AeroVironment will operate with the FCC for achieving suitable experimental licenses, for organizing the demonstrations and for effective integration of small UAS technology for DACA mission.