From IEEE Spectrum:

UAVForge is a DARPA-sponsored contest designed to get teams of anyone who wants to, to produce an advanced, highly capable UAV for the military. For an outlay of a $100,000 first prize (plus a trip to participate in a military exercise), DARPA is expecting to get a platform that can do something like this:

Key features here seem to be autonomous navigation, obstacle avoidance, loiter capability, and target tracking. This all implies some serious endurance, and the autonomous capability will be tricky in the sorts of environment that this video seems to show. Of course, there's a big disclaimer at the beginning about how this video is "not intended to represent the requirements" blah blah blah. And it's true that some of those features I just mentioned are part of the "advanced behaviors" list, as opposed to the "baseline objectives" list. But "advanced behaviors" have to be what DARPA is really looking for here: The basics (like take-offs, flying around a bit, and landings) are worth a mere 30 points out of the 200 that are possible.

All kinds of ideas have been put forward so far, with proof of flight submissions due last week. The competition itself will be a fly-off in spring of next year.

 Some of the submission entry videos are embedded in the IEEE Spectrum article, so check them outthere

Views: 1281

Comment by Jack Crossfire on December 13, 2011 at 7:40pm

If only the animation reflected reality: 1 meter GPS errors, intermittent radio contact in urban environments, shaky video, wind, noise the enemy can hear. Now if the military exercise involved a heroine warrior, that would be something.

Comment by Dano on December 13, 2011 at 8:29pm

I didn't see anything new in the videos :|

Comment by Javio on December 14, 2011 at 4:38pm

Militars always looking for the mad and evil side of everything. Hate them all.

Comment by Todd Hill on December 16, 2011 at 1:11am

DARPA with all there money.  Urban environment, multirotor power limitations, you think they would be able to put two and two together:)

Comment by Gerry Lichter on December 16, 2011 at 2:04am

I didn't realize this was an actual competition. All the CAD vaporware had left this competition totally off my radar. I thought it was strange that DARPA would be involved in a UAV version of "Pimp My Gun".

Now I know.


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