Hello, my name is Michael and I am working on an autonomous early wildfire detection system called Mountain Sparrow.
As wildfires continue to occur with higher intensity at higher frequency across the western United States and the world at large, a practical solution for the rapid identification of wildfires in complex wildland urban-interface (WUI) environments must be developed.
The solution must be robust, easily adoptable, require minimal training to operate, demand limited setup time, and be cost-effective to serve our most vulnerable under-funded communities.
The VTOL prototype developed so far is entirely 3D printed, rapidly assembled (Easy Assembly Video), can fly autonomously or manually (Short Hop Flight Video), maintains telemetry as well as control signal integrity BVLOS, and can autonomously takeoff/land during the day or night. Integration of the wildfire detection system is taking place now and the development of the charging system to improve hands-off around the clock operation is nearly complete.
CubePilot was generous enough to sponsor the RTK GPS system early in the project’s development, enabling the traversal of pre-determined routes as well as a more accurate representation of the UAV’s heading via compass measurements, and additional precision during takeoff and landing.