“FLARES achieves robustness by using generously-sized components, and redundancy,” states Hood Tech President, Dr. Andy von Flotow, “UAVs that carry their VTOL-stuff for the entire mission invariably skimp on VTOL component sizing, sacrificing redundancy, power margin and high/hot capability.”
Hood Tech’s next-generation Mast-based Aircraft Retrieval System (MARS 2) also performed nominally in the windy conditions. Following rope impact, the FLARES multicopter lowers the fixed-wing aircraft onto the monopole structure, which protects fragile control surfaces and payloads from ground contact.
In February 2019, FLARES was upgraded to FLARES 2.0. To date, FLARES 2.0 configuration has a perfect record through 60 flights.
FLARES 2.0 is now ready to provide VTOL to any fixed-wing aircraft up to 100 pounds in surface wind to 22 knots.
The photo shows FLARES 2.0 Multicopter carrying an 85 pound aircraft above the taxiway at Lexington Airfield 9S9 in 12-22 knots.
A video of the test at Lexington can be seen at this link.
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