The Coast Guard Research and Development Center is conducting its annual operation in the Arctic, Arctic Technology Evaluation 2018, in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, July 21 to Aug. 3. This year’s research will focus on evaluating how unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), unmanned surface vehicles (USV) and an aerostat balloon can work together as a network, and includes search and rescue and environmental mission scenarios.
July 29, 2018 – West Dock, Prudhoe Bay, Alaska
Moderate temperatures (50 degrees land, 43 degrees sea), cloudy skies with
abundant sunshine in the afternoon. Wind direction ESE at 15 knots.
The Research and Development Center team utilizes a small boat for testing in Prudhoe Bay. The AeroVironment Puma unmanned aircraft system (UAS) is deployed for an extended range test which spanned over four nautical miles. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Alexandra Swan.
The Puma UAS and the Coast Guard’s unmanned surface vessel (USV) are deployed together to test the feasibility of using multiple unmanned systems as a communications link over larger areas. The Puma has the capability of being landed in the water, allowing for easier recovery from smaller vessels during maritime operations. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Alexandra Swan.
To further evaluate the use of unmanned systems in oil spill recovery missions, a safe red dye was used to simulate an oil spill. The Splash Drone collects a sample of the dyed water with the USV ready for transport over longer distances. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Alexandra Swan.
The RDC team returns from boat operations in the bay with the unmanned systems. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Alexandra Swan.
Researchers wrap up the day’s operation with the USV. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Alexandra Swan.
July 28, 2018 – West Dock, Prudhoe Bay, Alaska
Cold temperatures (38 degrees land, 32 degrees sea) with overcast skies
and heavy rain. Wind direction East at 15 knots.
The Research and Development Center team prepares the AeroVironment Puma unmanned aircraft system (UAS) for operation off a small boat. The UAS was deployed with the Silent Echo Direction Finder payload and completed coastal surveillance and search pattern mission vignettes. U.S. Coast Guard photo.