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UAV - Butterfly TMP-20


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UAV helicopters are among the most innovative products currently on the military and security market. Security forces, armies, coastal guards and fire brigades in various countries are already widely using them given that these vehicles undoubtedly represent an alternative to traditional helicopters which is both financially convenient and professionally accurate.

Their main characteristic is their autonomous flight. All functions are carried out thanks to pre-programmed instructions sent by an on-board computer, not by a pilot.
A UAV helicopter can also be remotely run by a non-expert operator. The on-board computer interprets all commands thus rectifying any mistakes and guaranteeing all functions are accurately carried out.
UAV helicopters can carry out flight missions in a completely autonomous mode following a timeframe which is preestablished and pre-programmed on the on-board computer.

A limited surface (usually less than 4 square meters) is needed both for takeoff and landing and maximum speed exceeds 100 km per hour (depending on the model).
UAV helicopters are easy to transport and can be used in extreme weather conditions. In July 2008 ASM Europe successfully introduced for the first time a Rotomotion TMP-20 model at Pare Aberporth (an airport fully dedicated to the research and development of UAVs in the UK). The audience was favourably impressed by the stability of the aircraft during all flight phases in spite of the presence of really strong winds with guts of up to 40 knots.

Being much smaller than traditional manned helicopters, UAV helicopters allow for a considerable reduction in purchase, maintenance and transportation costs. Maintaining and operating a manned helicopter for a whole week would cost the same as investing in a new UAV.

Unlike traditional helicopters, UAVs can reach remote and high-risk areas and therefore prevent the possible - and unnecessary - loss of human lives.

These are some of the many military and civil applications a UAV can be used for:

  • Coast, border and national parks surveillance
  • Automatic surveillance and patrolling of pre-defined areas
  • Traffic surveillance
  • Detection of chemical, radioactive or explosive substances
  • Gas pipes, electric lines surveillance
  • Crime surveillance
  • Radio signals relay
  • Hostage search
  • Riots and crowd surveillance
  • Delivery of goods in life-threatening situations
  • Fishing surveillance
  • Fire surveillance
  • Rescue
  • Escorting of military convoys

UAVs can take high-resolution and hyperspectral photographic images and can be equipped with various types of cameras: day camera, thermal camera, infrared or ultraviolet cameras. The resulting images (e.g. tridimensional land mapping) are highly precise.

Various sensors and electric devices can be mounted on a UAV, weight being the only limitation.

UAVs can also be the ideal solution to verify the authenticity of some rescue calls without wasting human resources and therefore simplifying operational dynamics.
The precision and reliability of the data/images obtained via a UAV is undeniable. All this proves UAVs to be highly sophisticated, safe, innovative and financially convenient.

The TMP-20 is a small, economical, short endurance UAV. Utilizing a helicopter platform, the TMP-20 houses one to two cameras in a pan/tilt camera mount. The system is designed to track objects of interest even when the helicopter nose is pointed away from the object. The TMP-20 can carry day zoom cameras, infrared cameras, or both simultaneously. The aircraft is capable of fully autonomous flight with auto-takeoff and landing.
Manual control is provided by a 2.4MHz safety controller.

Length: 1220 mm, 48”
Width: 380 mm, 15”
Height: 560 mm, 22”
Main Rotor (M/R) Diameter: 1750 mm, 69”
Tail Rotor (M/R) Diameter: 255 mm, 10”
Dry Weight: 7.5 kg, 16.5lbs.
Energy Capacity: 8AH or 16Ah battery system
Motor: 1300W electric motor
Climb Rate: 122 mpm, 400 fpm (AFCS regulated)
Maximum Speed: 50 kph, 31 mph (AFCS regulated)
Endurance: 12 to 24 min (depending on battery configuration)
Maximum Payload: 4.5 kg, 10 lbs. (depending on options, altitude, fuel load)
Telemetry: 802.11-based, 800m, 87yards, LOS range (other systems available)
Safety Controller: 72Mhz, 730m, 800yards, LOS range

Autonomy 10 km
Can fly in 30 nodes wind speed.

The UAV is capable of fully autonomous flight with a safety operator to perform takeoff and landing and to engage and disengage the autonomous flight control system (AFCS). The AFCS utilizes an advanced stable‐hover (Patent Pending) control system. The helicopter has several modes of operation:

  • velocity command mode (VC‐Mode): the helicopter position is commanded by the safety operator using proportional velocity commands. For example, the cyclic control stick becomes the velocity control stick in velocity command mode. The stick commands the helicopter to move in the commanded direction at a speed proportional to the amount of stick movement on the transmitter.
  • way point route plan mode (WAY‐Mode): helicopter flies a preprogrammed series of way points (coordinates, heading, altitude, speed and other way point attributes)
  • command mode (CMD‐Mode): the helicopter is commanded in an ad‐hoc fashion by sending it guidance commands from another computer. These commands can be given by a human operator or by another computer system.

The AFCS is easily interfaced using a C/C++ library. This library provides fullbandwidth telemetry data and services to command and control the UAV.

Illustration 1: Moving map and AI display on the ground control station Illustration 2: Video and operating control display

  • Point-and-click routing
  • Joystick or touch screen operation
  • UAV and payload control
  • Multi-UAV / Single operator
  • Video and telemetry recording
  • Ethernet options
  • Ruggedized laptop options
  • Video recording and stabilization options
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