Air Force surveys industry for companies able to design UAV common sense-and-avoid system

uav formation

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB. U.S. Air Force unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) experts are looking for defense contractors able to design an airborne sense-and-avoid system that could be installed on a wide variety of UAVs to enable the unmanned aircraft to operate safely alongside commercial aircraft in civil airspace.

Air Force officials have issued a request for information (FA8620-14-R-4000) for the Common-Airborne Sense and Avoid (C-ABSAA) program, which seeks companies able to integrate Air Force-developed UAV sense-and-avoid technology into a system applicable to many kinds of UAVs.

Sponsoring the industry survey are officials of the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC), Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance & Special Operations Forces (ISR & SOF) Directorate (AFLCMC/WI) at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. Officials want responses from industry by 25 Oct. 2013.

The goal of the C-ABSAA program is to enable the Air Force to get blanket FAA approval to operate UAVs in unrestricted U.S. airspace by satisfying the FAA’s see-and-avoid requirement. The survey is for information only and will not result in a contract.

The C-ABSAA System must account for cooperative and non-cooperative aircraft in all classes of airspace, including the terminal area. The system also must develop display technology that will accommodate a wide variety of ground stations.

Companies interested should respond with a description of capabilities and relevant past experience. Joint ventures or teaming arrangements are encouraged. Email responses no later than 25 Oct. 2013 to the Air Force’s William Smith at [email protected].

Email questions or concerns to William Smith [email protected]. Companies also may contact the C-ABSAA ombudsman, Jill Willingham, by email [email protected], or by phone at 937-255-5472.

More information is online at


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