Animal Dynamics is developing a range of unmanned aerial delivery vehicles called Stork, based on powered paraglider wing technology. The current roadmap includes a range of vehicles:
ST 50 capable of carrying 30 kg and ST 150, capable of carrying 100kg. Further vehicles are planned, capable of carrying loads up to 3000kg.
Each system comprises a canopy, a vehicle with landing gear and a power unit. The 50kg vehicle is powered by an electric motor. The larger vehicles are powered by internal combustion engines. Each unit has an autonomous guidance system, comms, and camera.
Short take-off and landing capability
Autonomous guidance and navigation in both GPS and GPS-denied environments
Stealthy: low noise and radar signature, and can glide silently to target
Long endurance, high efficiency, long range ST150 range over 100km; ST1800 over 300km
Low cost: the cost of the vehicle per kg delivery capacity is <1/10th of the capital cost of all other delivery systems; running costs are lower still
Robust: the canopy is damage tolerant, and the vehicle has a graceful failsoft mode, gliding to a gentle landing in the rare event of catastrophic engine or systems failures
The vehicle itself packs down small, and is easy to transport on a standard NATO pallet
Vehicle mass between 20% and 30% of the potential payload mass.
TYPICAL OPERATING SCENARIOS
Supply Into Hazardous Environments
Stork can be used to supply medical equipment, food, fuel and vehicle parts from a Forward Operating Base (FOB) to front-line users. The vehicle can be loaded up ready for take-off from outside the warehouse or ground vehicle.
Stork models are capable of travelling 1- 300km at 70 km/h to a pre-set GPS location, depending on size (larger vehicles travel a greater distance).