LEO satellites can be replaced by UAV based solar





Conventional satellites and even do well with their standard tasks, but have a rather serious drawback – it’s incredibly expensive. Not only that the launch of the space shuttle cost is very expensive, so more and satellite delivery on board is also very financially costly process. In addition they can not safely be returned back to the earth. The company Titan Aerospace offers an alternative way out of this situation, which does not have any of the problems described above. Instead of the usual Titan Aerospace proposes to use the special “atmospheric satellites”, which are essentially drones, running on solar energy.

And in this case can help Titan Aerospace developed two versions of these drones, which are called Solara. Solara 50 has a wingspan of 50 meters and a length of 15.5 meters. Weighs a drone of 159 kg, and its additional load capacity is 32 kg. A larger version, called Solara 60, has a wingspan of 60 meters and is capable of carrying loads of up to 100 kg.



Both versions run on solar energy, which is collected placed on the tail and wings of the aircraft about 3,000 solar cells. Because of this, while at an altitude of 20 km above the ground, where it will not affect the weather, the UAV is capable of generating per day up to 7 kW of power. Hundreds of watts of usable energy will be stored in the installed on-board lithium-ion batteries, supporting the work of the engine, autopilot system and a set of sensors and telemetry, which will allow aircraft to move even at night.



Each such drone will begin its mission immediately after midnight and climb to cruising altitude, using its own battery. The whole next day, he will recharge their batteries using solar energy. Such an approach, the assurance of the company, allows a flight without any landings of up to five years. At the end of its mission, the UAV returns to the earth, where engineers will be able to diagnose the equipment and transported them to replace the part requires it.



Cruising speed drones Solara will be about 104 km / h with a range of 4.5 million kilometers. Within this time, the UAV can be engaged in surveillance, live mapping, crop monitoring, tracking weather conditions, various disasters – in short, all those involved than the usual low-orbit satellites.

In addition, Titan Aerospace announced that its drones can play the role of mobile cellular access points, covering the area of ​​over 16,800 square kilometers.

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