Visionair v8 – UAV Navigation’s upgraded Flight Control Solution
Mission planning plays a critical role in carrying out an operation involving the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The success of the mission largely depends on two factors — the correct route and altitude profile definition. Therefore, during the pre-flight checks, it is essential to take into account not only the mission’s goal, but also the concerned region’s orography, climatic conditions, and other essential factors.
Fulmar is a marinized UAV developed by the Spanish manufacturer Wake Engineering (formerly known as Aerovision). This unique UAV can be launched from a vessel and is currently used by the Spanish Army, among others. Fulmar makes use of a powerful flight control system that was developed by UAV Navigation, yet another Spanish company. UAV Navigation’s autopilot powers up this 3-meter wingspan that was exclusively developed for ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance) operations.
Visionair’s Latest Upgrade ensures Improved Predictive Path
Predictive paths play a critical role in the overall performance of UAVs. After taking into account the challenges faced by industry professionals, UAV Navigation is all set to roll out upgrades to Visionair. As a cutting-edge flight control solution, Visionair has been the preferred solution, by some of the leading names in the industry. However, to address the increasing demands of the aeronautical industry, a new upgrade has been released.
Version 8 of UAV Navigation's Flight Control System (FCS) allows the creation of flight plans with waypoints which update their position automatically in relation to a moving reference point, such as a Ground Control Station (GCS) located onboard a ship or a ground based vehicle.
In addition to UAV Navigation’s GCS, this moving external reference point may be any device capable of providing positional information. The system automatically recalculates and updates the waypoints in a flight plan, thereby achieving referenced navigation.
For fixed wing UAVs operating from traditional runways, the landing manoeuvre is usually the most challenging and critical stage of any flight.
Primoco, a Czech company, has been testing the latest version of UAV Navigation’s Flight Control System (FCS) on its 150kg fixed wing UAV. During the tests Primoco noted a number of improvements, including more efficient and advanced control, and in particular a completely automatic take-off and landing capability without using RTK or DGPS systems.
Internal combustion engines continue to be commonly used for powering unmanned vehicles, and in particular UAVs. In order to allow the autopilot (and by extension the operator) to control such an engine it is vital to ensure correct communications between the autopilot and the Engine Control Unit (ECU). The ECU not only provides throttle control, but it also feeds back important information to the ground control station about the engine's performance and status; common parameters include: cylinder head temperature, exhaust gas temperature, fuel pressure and flow rate, RPM etc.
UAV Navigation will be exhibiting at the DSEI Defense & Security Equipment International in London (ExCel).