NOAA Phase I Award for Tube-deployed UAV to be used in Storm Measurements

A Phase I contract has been awarded to Barron Associates for a low-cost, tube-deployed UAV that can be launched from a P-3 aircraft and transition to powered, wing-borne flight to take measurements near the ocean’s surface during tropical storms.  After the sensing operation, the UAVs are expended into the ocean. NOAA has previously executed tube-deployed UAV tests, at sea, using the Raytheon Coyote. Now that the capability has been demonstrated, NOAA is looking for a low-cost alternative to the Coyote to support deploying a multitude of UAVs during each test. Ultimately, this effort will lead to a low-cost, expendable tube-deployed UAV that can be integrated into NOAA’s SUAS fleet. The Phase I effort involves vehicle design, prototyping, wind tunnel testing, and flight testing.