A new company is now headed to Spaceport America in southern New Mexico in order to test recently developed turbulence-detection technology on unmanned glide flights through the stratosphere.
(TNS) — A new company is headed to Spaceport America in southern
The technology could help improve flight safety for commercial aviation, said spaceport Interim Executive Director
"Tracking down and measuring clear turbulence is difficult," McLaughlin told the Journal. "It's exciting to have someone on site doing that. We wish them luck."
Stratodynamics manages an unmanned aerial vehicle specifically designed to fly in the stratosphere, which ranges, roughly, from about 30,000 feet to about 100,000 feet. The company uses balloons to float the craft to a target height. It then breaks aways to slowly glide back down to Earth using an autopilot system, said Stratodynamics CEO
"We typically carry instruments for customers to measure things like ozone or greenhouse gasses in the stratosphere," Pundsack told the Journal. "In this case, we'll measure turbulence with two different sensors developed by NASA and the university. They'll be assembled together to cross validate them."
NASA designed a forward-sensing technology to detect turbulence before it reaches the aircraft, and the university built a device to measure turbulence when the vehicle is reaching the area of disturbance, said
Navigators could then apply mitigation strategies to avoid or better manage events, Bailey added.
The restricted airspace at
"There are no domestic air traffic routes there, which makes it much easier for these types of experimental flights," Pundsack said.
This is the fifth new aerospace company this year recruited by the spaceport. But the global pandemic is interfering with activities.
"It's making planning difficult for us and our customers," McLaughlin said.
In fact, the state's new coronavirus lockdown encouraged
"Due to the new COVID-19 restrictions in
(c)2020 the Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, N.M.). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
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