Low Magnetic Signature Expendable Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) for Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW)
Navy SBIR FY2014.1

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2014.1
Topic No.: N141-014
Topic Title: Low Magnetic Signature Expendable Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) for Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW)
Proposal No.: N141-014-0257
Firm: Latitude Engineering
744 South Euclid Avenue
Tucson, Arizona 85719-6626
Contact: Jason Douglas
Phone: (520) 792-2006
Web Site: http://www.latitudeengineering.com/
Abstract: Using a small, cost-effective, expendable Tier I UAV specifically engineered for magnetic anomaly detection will be an effective way to augment the P8-A HAASW capabilities. Tier I UAVs offer many advantages over larger Tier II UAVs for this mission. The main ones being their lower costs and expendability. The primary challenges with using a small Tier I UAV for ASW missions are the development of a sufficiently non-magnetic flying platform, achieving optimal physical separation between sources of magnetic noise and the magnetic sensors, and engineering the entire system to deploy from a sono-launch tube. Another key to high sensitivity magnetic anomaly detection is the use of a scalar atomic magnetometer. An atomic reference provides high accuracy measurements independent of platform motion, especially in the low frequency range critical to MAD. Until now, such systems were too large and heavy for use on Tier I UAVs. In this proposal, Latitude Engineering, a company with extensive unmanned aerial systems expertise, and Twinleaf, a leader in precision magnetic sensors, have teamed together to design, from the ground up, a magnetically quiet airframe specifically engineered for MAD. The proposed effort builds upon prior MAD research conducted by both companies.
Benefits: There are currently no Tier I UAVs capable of performing MAD for HAASW. The combined efforts of Latitude Engineering and Twinleaf are pioneering the way to make this innovative UAV a reality. We believe that the approach we have outlined in this proposal is a sound, methodical path towards the development of a viable Tier I MAD UAV. We anticipate our efforts will be of value to augmenting the HAASW mission of the P-8A aircraft. If our proposed Phase I effort is a success, then we will have reached a major milestone- a prototype articulating sono-launch airframe suitable for MAD.