Autonomous Airborne Multi-Rotor UAS Delivery System

Within current combat environments, there is a demand for rapid and extremely precise re-supply missions. Typical combat airdrops require long periods of planning and can produce a large signature in an operating environment which relies on stealth for various mission sets. Team Hermes, made up of four members from the West Point graduating class of 2019, offers a new re-supply method to answer this demand. The design will allow for the delivery of a quadcopter carrying 1.5 pounds of cargo within a 5-meter radius of an impact point on the ground. Each quadcopter is first transported via a wooden dispenser which is linked to the Air Force's Joint Precision Airdrop System (JPADS). JPADS is executed with a C-130. The dispenser payload is loaded into the back of the aircraft, and upon command, is dropped to route toward the impact point. JPADS descends and the dispenser releases the drones once it reaches a target altitude and proximity. The team worked through an extensive design process and developed a system capable of achieving the mission with autonomy. Through calculated testing procedures, Team Hermes achieved success and proved the capability to autonomously deliver the microlight payload to within 5 meters of a waypoint on the ground.
Payloads, Drones, Aircraft, Insulation, Heating systems, Latches
S. W. Jackson et al., "Autonomous Airborne Multi-Rotor UAS Delivery System," 2020 International Conference on Unmanned Aircraft Systems (ICUAS), Athens, Greece, 2020, pp. 702-708, doi: 10.1109/ICUAS48674.2020.9214011.