The auxiliary project brings VTOL science fiction technology closer to reality

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has chosen nine companies to produce initial operational system and demonstration system conceptual designs for a vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) unmanned aerial system (UAS) that can be deployed and retrieved without the need for large mechanical launchers and landing/recovery equipment used today. The Advanced Aircraft Infrastructure-Less Launch And Recovery program, nicknamed ANCILLARY, ultimately aims to flight demonstrate innovative aircraft configurations and critical technologies needed for a low-weight, large-payload, long-endurance VTOL unmanned X-plane.

The objectives of the program are to develop a small UAS that takes off and lands vertically, like a helicopter, and flies its missions like a very efficient winged aircraft, all while carrying a significant amount of payload for a variety of missions. We are looking for a VTOL UAS that can operate from ship flight decks and small, out-of-the-way land locations in most weather conditions without using typical launch and recovery equipment that is needed for current long-endurance, high payload weight aircraft. The major challenge is developing an integrated flight vehicle that meets the hard objective of combining VTOL, long endurance, and large payload while also meeting requirements for shipboard storage and operations,” said Steve Komadina, the DARPA program manager for ANCILLARY.

AeroVironment, AVX Aircraft, Griffon Aerospace, Karem Aircraft, Leidos, Method Aeropautics, Northrop Grumman, Piasecki Aircraft, and Sikorsky will develop VTOL UAS designs, with Navy and Marine missions in mind, during the six-month Phase Ia. Teams will then submit competitive proposals for more detailed X-plane design work. ANCILLARY aims to solve a combination of challenging design objectives by bringing together technology developments in advanced VTOL aircraft configurations, advanced propulsion architectures, and advanced control effectors/theory from traditional and non-traditional industry companies. The project is expected to culminate with X-plane flight tests in early 2026.

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is a research and development agency of the United States Department of Defense responsible for the development of emerging technologies for use by the military. Originally known as the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), the agency was created on February 7, 1958, by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in response to the Soviet launching of Sputnik 1 in 1957. By collaborating with academia, industry, and government partners, DARPA formulates and executes research and development projects to expand the frontiers of technology and science, often beyond immediate U.S. military requirements.

VIDEO:

Related Posts

The development of military transport helicopters since the Sikorsky R4 after more than 80 years

It seems that transport helicopters have progressed greatly in the past 80 years since the days of the Sikorsky R4 “Egg Beater,” which took to the sies in

China’s First Carrier Sails with 24 Fighter Jets

China’s first aircraft carrier, Liaoning, celebrated its birthday by carrying in what appears to be a full load of 24 J-15 carrier-borne fighters on September

America’s Largest Drone – The RQ 4 Global Hawk

In the United States, the RQ-4 Global Hawk is the largest remotely piloted aircraft The RQ-4 Global Hawk is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) developed by Northrop…

Brazil Boosts Air Power with AH-2 Sabre Helicopters

The ‘small but powerful’ artillery on armored vehicles in the Ukrainian battlefield

Armored vehicles mounted with 20-40 mm caliber guns play an important role in the Ukrainian battlefield, although their firepower is not as strong as large-caliber guns on…

South Korea suspects North Korea provided more than a million artillery shells to Russia

South Korean intelligence believes that North Korea in the past three months has transferred more than a million artillery shells to Russia for use in the conflict…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *