Skyways Autonomous Mission
A group of entrepreneurs presented their nascent products and discoveries during a virtual pitch meeting on April 8 held as part of Starburst Aerospace Accelerator’s latest Selection Committee event. Headquartered in Paris, Starburst’s U.S. team brought in 10 hopeful companies, all vying for partnership agreements, venture capitalist funding and a chance to join Starburst’s Accelerator Program.
The event pairs the startups with potentially interested corporations, investors and government agencies. The startups’ prospective products, which range in level of technical readiness, cut across all aspects of aerospace, from power generation to launch platforms, satellite-enabled connectivity and autonomous aerial vehicles.
Usually, Starburst Accelerator’s selection committee meetings are held in-person, but naturally, given the COVID-19 crisis, the aerospace technology accelerator went virtual, hosting the planned Los Angeles session online instead. More than 250 attendees joined to hear 10-minute pitches from 10 startup companies. The participants included potential investors, officials from the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, NASA, U.K. Ministry of Defense as well as defense companies Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Panasonic Avionics, according to Van Espahbodi, Starburst co-founder and managing partner.
Among the 10 companies featured in the April 8 Virtual Selection Committee event are:
Philadelphia-based Asylon is presenting a comprehensive automated aerial security platform, through their DroneCore and Drone IQ products. The platform is designed to automate drone-based physical security monitoring all the way through to the back end, according to Michael Quiroga, chief revenue officer.
“DroneCore aims to help customers protect their perimeters at a nearly 50 percent target savings compared to traditional methodologies, while increasing security and safety capabilities,” Quiroga said.
The advanced robotics, aviation and artificial intelligence capabilities on the payload-agnostic platform provide integrated security analytics, enable preprogrammed autonomous missions, alarm response to third-party sensors and manual command and control missions.
Joining the race to the skies, Skyways is offering an aircraft that is a cross between a helicopter and a small plane. The aircraft has an 18-foot wingspan and can carry 50 lbs of cargo over a 250-mile range. The unmanned aircraft has fully autonomous cargo operations and navigation systems, employs ground and air collision avoidance through artificial intelligence and uses computer-vision-based precision landing. With its vertical takeoff and landing capability, no runway is needed, said Charles Acknin, founder, Skyways.
“It has the brain of a UAV [unmanned aerial vehicle],” Acknin stated. “We are approaching this problem from a software angle to build a 100 percent automated solution.”
The three-year old startup is first pursuing the oil and gas industry, which is an ideal application of the aircraft to fly to their offshore oil and gas platforms in the Gulf of Mexico. The company has sold vehicles to U.S. Marine Corps and has secured an other transaction authority contract, or OTA, with the U.S. Navy. So far, Skyways has built 23 autonomous aircraft, completed 910 test flights, transported 2,420 lbs of cargo across 1,860 miles, Acknin noted.
UAV DACH: Beitrag im Original auf https://www.uasvision.com/2020/04/16/starburst-aerospace-accelerators-selection-committee-virtual-event/, mit freundlicher Genehmigung von UAS Vision automatisch importiert. Der Beitrag gibt nicht unbedingt die Meinung oder Position des UAV DACH e.V. wieder. Das Original ist in englischer Sprache.