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Rockwell Collins, DARPA Demo UAV Aerobatics

Photo: Mate 2nd Class Daniel J. McLain

As part of its ongoing damage tolerance research contract with the Defense Advance Research Projects Agency, Rockwell Collins has demonstrated the first unmanned aerial vehicle to fly aerobatics with position tracking.

The all-attitude control technology supplies UAVs with damage tolerance and the ability to fight and to counter threats such as missiles, said Dave Vos, senior director of Rockwell Collins Control Technologies and Unmanned Aircraft Systems.

“This technology will also enable UAVs to fly at low altitude, in urban environments and even in confined places such as inside buildings and caves,” he said.

The technology is now set to be ported to an operational UAV, Vos said. He added that while others have flown aerobatics of autonomous UAVs, the most recent DARPA test was the first UAV to fly aerobatics with position tracking with a fixed aerobatic trajectory in space.

The demonstration is part of the third phase of a damage tolerance contract awarded to the aerospace and defense contractor.

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