A team of researchers from the Communication Engineering Department (DICOM), University of Cantabria works, together with Indra Espacio in the development of communications systems equipment and high-capacity aircraft applications in both manned and unmanned. The latter are known as UAVs by the acronym “Unmanned Aerial Vehicle.”

The group composed of teachers and Antonio Angel Mediavilla Bowl, along with investigators A. Tribak, Karen Cepero and Sandra Pana, has designed several subsystems flight terminal and ground, among which is the complex system with automatic tracking antenna compensates for aircraft movements and ensure the correct pointing (“tracking” ) in any situation. Likewise, other components have been developed to feed the antennas.

Given the small size available in the aircraft (especially in unmanned), the miniaturization of equipment on board is a key constraint has been overcome thanks to the collaboration of the company Cantabrian precision machining Utilmec SL
Unmanned aerial systems, piloted remotely, can perform many missions, both civilian and defense and security, avoid endangering human lives. Among these applications is the efficient management of fire and other natural disasters, monitoring of critical infrastructure (transportation routes, power distribution …), identification of persons in distress or missing, the fight against terrorism and piracy, drug trafficking and illegal immigration, etc.

To be able to perform these missions, UAVs are based on a careful design of the aircraft (aerodynamics, propulsion, flight control, launch and recovery …) and the payload. The payload may include a series of sensors, optical and infrared cameras, radars, etc., And communications equipment that allow for both remote control of the aircraft as the transmission of information gathered by the sensors.

Satellite Communications
The Department of Communications Engineering develops, through the Radio Frequency and Microwave Group, several lines of research related to the circuits and communication systems, antenna design and device characterization. One of the latest projects, also with Indra Espacio, was the design of circuits for satellite Hispasat Amazonas-2, currently in orbit and whose mission is to provide a variety of communications services, including corporate services to small and medium companies, government services for rapid deployment of small terminals in remote areas, emergencies, natural disasters, etc.. and the combined offers (telephony, Internet and television) telecommunications operators, where terrestrial infrastructure does not exist.

By Gary Mortimer

Founder and Editor of sUAS News | Gary Mortimer has been a commercial balloon pilot for 25 years and also flies full-size helicopters. Prior to that, he made tea and coffee in air traffic control towers across the UK as a member of the Royal Air Force.