The purpose of The Sirens Project is to provide meteorologists and engineers with valuable surface data inside of tornadoes that will lead to more reliable warnings and structures. To show the immense applications that unmanned aerial vehicles posses is another aspect of this research project.
To achieve this, we will be using specially designed and equipped UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) in order to probe the tornado for valuable information. Our UAVs are coupled with a sensor package that is able to record barometric pressure, temperature, and relative humidity. Each data point will be related to a specific GPS coordiante, including elevation. In turn, a 3-Dimensional representation of the sensor package inside the tornado will be rendered. This will allow meteorologists and engineers to essentially have access to the first MRI of a tornado.
Our UAV design is based off of a deltawing style aircraft. This will allow us to reach high speeds while maintaining necessary control in high wind environments. A long range FPV (First Person View) system will allow us to safely deploy our sensor package from several miles away. The electronics of the sensor package are surrounded by a thick polycarbonate case, allowing for great impact resistance as well as superb electrical transmission. The sensor package acts much like the "black box" on a commercial airliner. It is designed to survive the harsh environment inside the tornado even if the UAV does not.
A compact 1080p HI-Definition camera is secured inside the sensor package in order to document the tornado intercept, and provide any visual data that might help understand tornado dynamics at the surface.
Through a GPS/GSM module, we are able to track the probe, and locate it after the intercept. The data is recorded to an internal SD card several times a second.
In addition to collecting very much needed data, we will also be documenting the project. Every aspect of the project including: design, manufacturing, challenges, and of course the actual intercept will be weaved together into a high definition documentary film. Everyone has a chance to experience this incredible ground breaking project!
With a successfully funded Kickstarter we can experiment with different UAV designs and sensor package layouts in order to be most proficient in collecting data.
We Need Your Help!
In order to take this project to the next phase of success, and record reliable datasets, we need your help! The funding we receive from our Kickstarter pledgers will manufacture more advanced UAVs and sensor packages. Also, to put it plain and simple...We need gas money. Severe weather can happen anywhere in the continental United States, so being able to respond to the potential for tornadoes anywhere in the country is necessary to retrieve data. With your help we can assist meteorologists in issuing better tornado warnings, and engineers in building more reliable structures. Be a part of something that will ultimately change lives!
Risks and challenges
Forecasting when tornadoes will occur is a finicky science. You win some and you lose some. It is a disappointment when the forecast doesn't pan out like anticipated. The only way to ensure that we get our UAVs into a tornado is to be ready to deploy on every severe weather event we can. We can over come this challenge with your support!
Drones, Drones, and more Drones:
The UAVs themselves are designed to be disposable, where as the sensor package acts much like a black box on a commercial airliner. Chances are each UAV won't survive the tornado intercept. We need several UAVs in order to get as many data sets as possible. The more data we collect, the more benefit we will be to engineers and meteorologists. We plan to use a majority of the funding to building more UAVs. With your help this won't be an issue!
Being a Pioneer:
This type of project has never been done before. There is a learning curve in being the first to do something. We have no one else to go off of aside from those who pour into this project. Technology and forecasting issues are sure to arise, but this project consists of very passionate individuals who posses skill sets that will make this ground breaking research project a success! Be a part of our journey!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (35 days)