The growth and use of unmanned aerial vehicles has proliferated tremendously since the early 1990's. All U.S. military branches (including covert special operations units) and many government agencies are now using fully autonomous UAV's with GPS guided autopilots, to fly missions which gather and relay real-time intelligence to using agencies. With decreasing deployable military personnel, UAV's are fast becoming an effective force multipler for global reconnaissance. Millions of dollars have been awarded in 2005 to aerospace companies to further develop UAV techology for carrying sensors, cameras and weapons. The U.S. military fully intends to weaponize UAV's over the next few years for fully offesnsive capabilities instead of the current reconnaissance only applications. These UAV's bridge the gap between satellite and reconnaissance aircraft imagery intelligence at a fraction of the cost and resources. Most government and military research involving current and ongoing UAV programs are classified Secret or Top Secret/SCI-SAP. The current well known Predator UAV programs employ secure voice, signals intelligence and imagery conveyed through the Trojan Spirit II satellite commuinications (SATCOM) system, which is classified Top Secret/SCI (sensitive compartmented information) to convey real-time military intelligence battlefield operations to tactical ground commanders.. The current trend of these programs is developing smaller, cheaper, higher altitude, longer endurance, sensorized and weaponized UAV's.
Most UAV's carry tens of thousands of dollars of sensors, cameras, GPS recievers, transmitters, autopilots, and other expensive payloads. Many UAV's weren't originally designed for using a parachute recovery system. However, the need to protect the high dollar investment of these UAV's is now becoming apparent.. Electrical failures, loss of signal with satellites or ground stations, can and will happen, resulting in potential loss or destruction of an expensive UAV. A parachute recovery system is a cheap insurance against the loss of a very expensive unmanned aerial vehicle.
UAV Parachute Systems:
Paratech Parachutes produces extremely lightweight hybrid cross UAV parachute systems, ideally suited for the growing number of small and mid-sized UAV's. Cross parachutes are perfectly matched for UAV's, as they can deploy at higher speeds with less opening force than outdated round parachutes, which are heavier and pack less efficiently. Our UAV parachute systems have been used in the IARC annual aerial robotics competion at Ft. Benning as well as by aerospace companies. Contact Paratech Parachutes for design and development of UAV parachute systems, or reconfiguration of our existing systems to fit your special or unique applications.