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Industry News
Pentagon looks to double its unmanned air force
California State Northridge takes top honors at IGVC
Renaissance robot approved for spinal surgery
Chile in export deal for advanced UAV
NASA starts new robot challenge
India beefs up China front with UAVs, copters to monitor PLA
DARPA invites innovative ideas for designing small unmanned aerial vehicles
Testers find limitations for Global Hawk
AUVSI Advocacy
AUVSI participates in 2011 UAS Action Summit
Rep. Shuler introduces legislation to increase availability of unmanned aerial systems to DHS
FCC Chairman Genachowski responds to Lightsquared concerns
Rep. Berg commends North Dakota as leader in unmanned aircraft
CBP unmanned aircraft reach 10,000-hour milestone
AUVSI News and Announcements
10 reasons why you should exhibit at AUVSIís Unmanned Systems North America
New in the June 2011 issue of Unmanned Systems
Sign up for AUVSIís second webinar: Safe Skies: SMS and its impact on the industry
Register today for the JHU/APL and AUVSI Capitol Chapter Small UAS Symposium
Chapter events call for papers
Unmanned Science Newsletter
Unmanned Science Newsletter
Business Opportunities
AUVSI's Weekly Business Opportunities
 
Industry News
Pentagon looks to double its unmanned air force
Wired (31/5/11) Axe, David

The Pentagon released a 30-year plan which calls for a 100 percent increase in its unmanned air force in the next nine years. Medium to large unmanned aircraft were the only major area of expansion in the proposal. 

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California State Northridge takes top honors at IGVC
AUVSI (7/6/11) Lucey, Danielle

California State Northridge and its robot Red Raven placed first in the 19th annual Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition, held on the campus of Oakland University this week. 

web link

Renaissance robot approved for spinal surgery
Reuters (6/6/11) Cohen, Tova
The Food and Drug Administration approved the Renaissance robot, manufactured by Israel's Mazor Robotics, for the next generation of robotic spinal surgery. The robot will extend surgeons' abilities on a wide range of procedures. Mazor expects to put the robot on the market immediately.
 
Chile in export deal for advanced UAV
Globes (6/6/11) Azulai, Yuval
Chile is the first country outside Israel to procure Elbit Systems' Hermes 900 UAS. Intelligence sources say Chile will use the aircraft, largest of the Hermes family, for reconnaissance and observation missions along its coastline.
 
NASA starts new robot challenge
The Space Review (6/6/11) Brockert, Ben
Worcester Polytechnic Institute posted its rules for the Sample Return Robot Challenge, the latest in a series of NASA-funded Centennial Challenges. The goal of the challenge is to have a fully autonomous robot travel a course, collect predefined samples and return it to the base. The contest will run for one year after NASA and WPI post the final rules. 
 
India beefs up China front with UAVs, copters to monitor PLA
Times of India (6/6/11) Pandit, Rajat

India is keeping an eye on the stepped-up activities of the People's Liberation Army by deploying unmanned aircraft and light helicopters along the borders with China. The construction of more than 5,500 defensive bunkers is also being accelerated to ensure they are finished within four or five years under a new military construction budget.

web link

DARPA invites innovative ideas for designing small unmanned aerial vehicles
AZRobotics.com (2/6/11) Choi, Andy

DARPA and the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Atlantic (SSC Atlantic) are inviting engineers and scientists to come up with innovative designs for small unmanned aircraft. The UAVForge Challenge comes complete with $100,000 in prize money.

Testers find limitations for Global Hawk
Aviation Week (6/6/11) Butler, Amy

In an unusual finding, the Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation Center said Block 20/30 Global Hawks are "effective with significant limitations" because they can't completely and reliably perform their high-altitude imagery and signals intelligence mission. Gen. David Eichorn explained the "shade of gray" conclusion by saying the Global Hawk "provides a valuable service to our nation, and to the allies ... I felt more comfortable calling it effective because it does do some things well. But it has got a ways to go to being all that we want it to be.”

web link

AUVSI Advocacy
AUVSI participates in 2011 UAS Action Summit

On 2 June, AUVSI President and CEO Michael Toscano was the keynote speaker at the 2011 UAS Action Summit, held in Grand Forks, N.D.  The summit, now in its fifth year, was sponsored by the Red River Valley Research Corridor and supported by AUVSI’s Great Plains Chapter.  The honorary co-hosts of the event were U.S. Senators Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) and John Hoeven (R-N.D.), and the summit included participation by Lt. Governor of North Dakota Drew Wrigley, U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Al Franken (D-Minn.), in addition to Reps. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), Rick Berg (R-N.D.), and former-U.S. Senator Byron Dorgan. 

AUVSI President Toscano’s speech addressed the current and future trends of the UAS industry, in addition to imploring decision makers to provide the necessary leadership for unmanned systems (air, ground, and maritime) to gain public acceptance and to operate in the civil marketplace. 

“Our industry is at a tipping point” Toscano said. “We are closely reaching the point, if we have not already, where technological hurdles will no longer be the limiting factor in fielding unmanned systems. The current and future challenges our industry will face will be governmental, regulatory, legal, and societal. For these reasons, it is imperative that our decision makers get the data they need to make smart, informed decisions. I implore you all to get active and to tell your story about the goodness our industry can bring to the safety and well being of all.”

For more coverage of the UAS Action Summit, click here.


Rep. Shuler introduces legislation to increase availability of unmanned aerial systems to DHS

Rep. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) introduced H.R. 2000, the Secure America through Verification and Enforcement Act of 2011. The legislation directs the secretaries of the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Defense to develop and implement a plan for increased availability and use of Department of Defense equipment, including unmanned aerial vehicles, tethered aerostat radars, and other surveillance equipment. This will assist the secretary of homeland security in carrying out surveillance activities conducted at or near the international land borders of the United States. Additionally, the secretary of homeland security shall establish a program to procure additional unmanned aerial vehicles, cameras, poles, sensors, satellites, radar coverage, and other technologies necessary to achieve operational control of the international borders of the United States subject to the availability of appropriations.

HR2000 currently has 39 co-sponsors and has been referred to the Committee on Homeland Security, as well as the Judiciary, Ways and Means, Education and the Workforce, Oversight and Government Reform, Armed Services, Agriculture, and Natural Resources committees.

Click here to view H.R. 2000 in its entirety.


FCC Chairman Genachowski responds to Lightsquared concerns

On 27 April, the ranking Republican on the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), wrote a letter to the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) outlining concerns with LightSquared’s application to build terrestrial transmitters that have the potential to significantly interfere with GPS signals. 

On 31 May, Chairman of the FCC Julius Genachowski wrote a response reassuring the senator that the FCC will not permit LightSquared to begin commercial service without first resolving concerns about potential “widespread” harmful interference to GPS devices. A working group, which includes GPS users, was created to examine the issue. The group is scheduled to release a final report on their findings on 15 June. 

Due to the potential disruption of GPS signals for unmanned systems, AUVSI President and CEO Michael Toscano wrote a letter to the FCC on 12 April outlining the industry’s concern with any interference to the GPS. Although AUVSI is pleased with the reassurance given by the FCC Chairman, AUVSI’s Advocacy Team will remain vigilant in monitoring this situation, and AUVSI will notify its members of any future opportunity to provide public comment.


Rep. Berg commends North Dakota as leader in unmanned aircraft

Congressman Rick Berg (R-N.D.) commended the attendees at the Unmanned Systems Action Summit in Grand Forks for advancing the research and development of unmanned aircraft in North Dakota.

"As we work to create jobs and keep our country safe, investing in valuable technology like unmanned systems will remain critical to our country," Rep. Berg stated. "I'm excited to see the continued growth of unmanned aerial systems, both in Grand Forks and throughout the nation, and I will remain a committed advocate of this technology."

Click here to read more.


CBP unmanned aircraft reach 10,000-hour milestone

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced on 2 June that its Office of Air and Marine's Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) program achieved a historic milestone: exceeding 10,000 flight hours.

Unveiled in 2005, the Predator B UAS supports CBP's primary mission of securing the border and preventing acts of terrorism by helping to identify and intercept potential terrorist and illegal cross-border activity. Manufactured by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc., the aircraft's operational capabilities, payload capacity and mission flexibility greatly enhances the agency's enforcement and emergency and disaster response efforts.

Click here to read more.


 

 

AUVSI News and Announcements
10 reasons why you should exhibit at AUVSIís Unmanned Systems North America

1. See and Be Seen. With more than 450 exhibitors and 6,500 attendees from every facet of the robotics and unmanned systems industry, AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems North America 2011 is the place to promote your latest products and see the latest advancements in the industry.

2. Beyond the Booth. Take advantage and get your message out to potential customers and decision-makers that are touring the exhibit hall through advertising, sponsorship or presenting in the Beyond the Booth Showcase on the show floor.

3. LIVE Indoor Demonstration Areas for air, ground and maritime vehicles to showcase new and advancing technologies.

4. International Buyers Program. AUVSI is partnering with the U. S. Commercial Service, which will facilitate contact between U.S. exhibitors and international buyers. 

5. Complimentary Exhibit Hall Customer Passes. Invite your customers to visit the largest showcase of unmanned systems and robotics hardware in the world.

6. Gain Even More Exposure. Attendees have the ability to search your company through our online exhibitor database and can create a customized floor plan to schedule meetings with you.

7. Complimentary Use of the Press Briefing Room. Host a press conference in the designated Press Briefing room and increase your exposure to more than 50 media outlets. 

8. Press Kit Placement in the Press Work Room. Get even more media attention by placing your press kit in the Press Work Room.

9. Press Releases on Show Website. Upload your press releases directly to AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems North America 2011 website.

10. FINALLY…If it is happening in the world of robotics and unmanned systems … it is happening at AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems North America 2011!

For more information and to register, visit http://symposium.auvsi.org



 

New in the June 2011 issue of Unmanned Systems

Unmanned Helicopters: Whether completely unmanned or optionally manned but capable of manned-unmanned teaming, helicopters are taking on important new roles for the U.S. and allied militaries. Here's a look at some of the key contenders for these dull, dirty and dangerous jobs.



European Update: France and the United Kingdom are working on new cross-channel unmanned systems, including a MALE unmanned aircraft. Meanwhile, the pan-European Neuron project looks to begin ground testing by the end of this year.



Ravens and Cranes: Counting cranes can be tricky, so the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Geological Survey enlisted some help from birds of another kind: Ravens, AeroVironment's small unmanned aircraft.



All this and an update on anti-IED efforts, the economic impact of unmanned systems, a look at the market for fuel bladders, a recap of the LAAD 2011 show in Brazil, and more! Click here to read the magazine online (members only) or to join AUVSI and start your subscription.

 


 

Sign up for AUVSIís second webinar: Safe Skies: SMS and its impact on the industry

Registration is now open for AUVSI's webinar Safe Skies: SMS and its Impact on the Industry, 6 July at 3 p.m. EDT.

SMS (safety management systems) are data-driven safety systems that the FAA will soon REQUIRE for all UAS trying to operate in the national airspace.

Expert Steve Cowell from SRC Aviation will show what SMS is and how it will work under the new requirements. It's an event the UAS world cannot miss.

Register here.


Register today for the JHU/APL and AUVSI Capitol Chapter Small UAS Symposium

This is the premier conference for small UAS that make up more than 90% of all UAS in the DOD.

The event is focused on the small UAS community (Shadow-class and below: Group I, Group II, Group III) with an understanding of the impact of existing, advancing and asymmetric threats in Joint Warfighting and Homeland Security.

Dates: 28-30 June 2011
Time: 0830 - 1700 daily

Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory
Kossiakoff Conference Center
11100 Johns Hopkins Road
Laurel, MD

Symposium Features
•Keynote Addresses
•Presentations by Military, Policymakers, and Industry Executives
•Reports from Current Warfighting Operations
•Acquisition Plans & Emerging Requirements
•Industry / Academia Technology Opportunities
•Lessons Learned from Small UAS Operators
•Exhibits with SUAS Themes
•Networking receptions

Symposium Sessions
Tuesday, 28 June UNCLASSIFIED
Wednesday, 29 June SECRET/NOFORN
Thursday, 30 June SECRET/NOFORN

Most of SUAS-11 is being conducted at the Secret/NOFORN Level.

Topics
•Air Vehicle Performance
•Autonomy
•Training
•Airspace Integration
•Manned and Unmanned Teaming
•Communications
•Interoperability

For more information, visit https://secwww.jhuapl.edu/SUAS/


Chapter events call for papers

AUVSI San Diego Lindbergh Chapter
Unmanned Systems Interoperability Conference, 31 October – 3 November 2011
Call for Papers Submission Deadline: 15 June 2011

AUVSI Israel Chapter
2012 International Conference, 10-12 March 2011, Tel Aviv, Israel
Call for Papers Submission Deadline: 31 July 2011

Unmanned Science Newsletter
Unmanned Science Newsletter

Only available to AUVSI members.

To receive AUVSI's Unmanned Science Newsletter and more please visit http://www.auvsi.org/membership to become a member today!
Business Opportunities
AUVSI's Weekly Business Opportunities
Only available to AUVSI members.

To receive AUVSI's Federal Business Opportunities and more please visit http://www.auvsi.org/membership to become a member today!
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
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Upcoming Events
9 - 12 June 2011
Virginia Beach, Va.
 
15 - 19 June 
Patuxent River, Md.

AUVSI UK Chapter Inaugural Meeting
29 June
Royal Air Force Club
128 Piccadilly, London 

International RoboSub Competition
12 - 17 July
San Diego, Calif.

AUVSI's Unmanned Systems North America 2011
16 - 19 August 2011
Walter E. Washington Convention Center
Washington, D.C.

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The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) is the world's largest non-profit organization representing over 6,000 individuals in more than 50 countries, and is devoted to advancing the unmanned systems community. AUVSI, with members from government organizations, industry and academia, is committed to fostering, developing, and promoting unmanned systems and related technologies.

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