Unmanned Systems Technology 026 I Tecdron TC800-FF I Propellers I USVs I AUVSI 2019 part 1 I Robby Moto UAVE I Singular Aircraft FlyOx I Teledyne SeaRaptor I Simulation & Testing I Ocean Business 2019 report

74 A nyone who has watched news footage of such events will readily appreciate that there are major issues with delivering aid to disaster-hit areas. Take- off zones may be many miles distant, and almost by definition there are usually no suitable places to land. Flying into such areas can be extremely hazardous, even for experienced pilots, so organisations such as the World Food Programme have been looking at unmanned aircraft to solve these and other problems. However, the specifications for such an aircraft are quite challenging. It needs to carry a payload of at least 200-500 kg to feed a minimum of 95 adults, and have a range of at least 100-500 km. One approach is to fly over a crisis area and supply aid from an unmanned aircraft at a low height. Inspired by the design of firefighting aircraft (see sidebar), this requires a considerable change to the cargo system, for delivering the aid as well as quick re-stocking. Spanish company Singular Aircraft has therefore adapted its amphibious UAV with a modular design that can trade off the space for cargo with fuel tanks, balancing the range requirements with the need to deliver as much aid as possible in each mission. “When the World Food Programme asked us to transport sorghum [a cereal crop], we saw that it is capable of withstanding a drop from a plane, so we wanted to give them the option to do that,” says Luis Carrillo Lostao, founder of Singular Aircraft. “We therefore chose a firefighting version of our amphibious UAV. Getting a plane into dangerous situations has risks for a pilot though, so we thought, ‘Why not use an autonomous aircraft?’” Enter the FlyOx. Using the firefighting version as the base of the design provides a load capacity of 1500 kg with 300 litres of fuel, or a payload of 720 kg of food with 2200 litres of fuel – enough to fly a round trip of 2200 nautical miles over 24 hours. Design The FlyOx is designed to be operated autonomously or remotely. However, this means that under current regulations it cannot travel long distances; it has to be transported wherever needed in a standard 40 ft (12 m) shipping container. Nick Flaherty looks at an aerial platform developed to deliver food and medicines to areas hit by disasters June/July 2019 | Unmanned Systems Technology International aid worker The FlyOx has been developed to deliver aid to disaster-hit areas, flown remotely or autonomously