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Autonomous Systems (UAVs)

Project CONDOR

'Project CONDOR' is our codename for a heavy-lift quadcopter cargo drone concept for a range of Defence and Civilian materiel transport applications, where autonomous, eVTOL UAVs would offer distinct advantages over manned ground or aerial vehicles.


Applications
  • Autonomous Cargo Transport
  • Autonomous cargo drones are predicted to increasingly take on tasks such as transporting freight in intra-urban ('last mile'), inter-urban (50-100km), humanitarian (emergency response) and defence (field logisitcs support) roles.

    We're developing a platform to address 'on demand' transport of mid-range payloads up to 120-150kg; one able to take off from and land in smaller spaces than is possible with helicopter of tilt-wing rotorcraft, and to be prepped and ready for medium-haul operations (up to 100kms), including a full recharge, in minutes.

  • Humanitarian Aid
  • We see a future in which life-saving materiel, including medicines, blood and blood plasma, clean water, food rations and water purification devices can be delivered faster, in a wider range of situations and terrains, with higher frequency, at a lower cost per kilogram, using autonomous aerial systems that can see their environment and make decisions about how to get from A to B safely and efficiently.

    We're also investigating applications such as rapid-deployable medical clinics, where medical scanners and mobile oeprating theatres can be rapidly deployed to remote areas or locations not easily accessed by road.

    Features
  • Airframe:

    Carbon composite material. Octacopter configured as a quadcopter. 4x ducted coaxial fan assemblages.

  • Propulsion:

    Distributed electric drives developing estimated (peak) 350kg thrust via compact multi-bladed fans.

  • Power:

    Modular hybrid power systems comprised of new generation PEM-FCs and high energy density batteries - or any combination thereof.

  • Autonomy:
  • 'Level 4+' where RPAS (Remotely Piloted Aerial Systems) and BVLOS (Beyond Visual Line Of Sight) flight rules apply (near term limitation)

    'Level 5' where APAS (Autonomously Piloted Aerial System) flights are permitted (longer term objective)

  • Payload:
  • 120kg (near term); 200kg+ longer term

  • Flight Duration:
  • 2 hours/100kms (target)

  • Air Speed:
  • >50kph (cruise)


    Challenges
  • All Electric, VTOL Design
    We're working with battery and fuel cell developers to create an optimised all-electric propulsion system able to deal with the specific demands of a large format eVTOL (Electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing) multi-rotor UAS.

  • Ducted Coaxial Electric Fan propulsion
    We've developed a ducted coaxial fan system able to generate significantly more thrust at lower RPMs, and less nopise, than conventional, larger diameter, 'open rotor' designs. Plus it's a safer, fully enclosed design.

  • 'Level 5' (full) autonomy
    We're partering with recognised world leaders to develop autonomous flight capabilities that will make CONDOR as safe and reliable as rotary or fixed wing, piloted cargo transports. In fact, our aim is to help create an Australian standard that defines what UAS autonomous systems will be, to help others develop their own, compliant, autonomous platforms.


  • DISCLAIMER:

    The images and text describe concepts under development and do not necessarily represent a final solution delivered to market.

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