NASA SBIR 2020-II Solicitation

Proposal Summary

Proposal Information

Proposal Number:
20-2- A3.04-5341
Phase 1 Contract #:
Subtopic Title:
Non-Traditional Airspace Operations
Proposal Title:
Low-Altitude Wind Hazard Alerting and Rerouting Service

Small Business Concern

2770 De La Cruz Boulevard, Santa Clara, CA 95050
(408) 736-2822                                                                                                                                                                                

Principal Investigator:

Aditya Saraf
2770 De La Cruz Boulevard, CA 95050 - 2624
(408) 736-2822                                                                                                                                                                                

Business Official:

Joe Isaacs
2770 De La Cruz Blvd. , CA 95050 - 2624
(408) 736-2822                                                                                                                                                                                

Summary Details:

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) :                                                                                                                                                          
Begin: 3
End: 6
Technical Abstract (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words):

Today’s operational weather guidance does not provide the spatial and temporal granularity necessary to support routing or wind hazard alerting guidance for UAM operations in urban environments. This gap threatens the economic viability and scalability of UAM operations. To address this gap, in Phase I, ATAC and NCAR developed the Low Altitude Wind Hazard Alerting and Rerouting (LAWHAR) service. LAWHAR addresses Subtopic A3.04’s need for dynamic route planning that considers changing environmental conditions (mainly fine-scale wind impacts) and vehicle performance. LAWHAR leverages NCAR’s Large Eddy Simulation (LES) model for predicting building-induced wind-flow effects at fine resolutions, applies clustering to predict dynamically changing wind hazard regions, and reroutes UAM aircraft away from these hazard regions. Phase I provided a proof-of-concept by demonstrating actionable wind hazard guidance for several Dallas, TX downtown Vertiports for a challenging cold weather-front passage scenario. In Phase II, we build on Phase I’s success to create a commercial, licensable low-altitude weather guidance tool for several use cases that benefit NASA UAM researchers, UAM/Helicopter/UAS operators and UAM infrastructure planners. Phase II pursues three thrusts: (1) Make enhancements to Phase I SBIR components in the areas of new LES model development, machine learning-based data reduction techniques, LES validation, aircraft-type dependent wind-hazard-severity thresholds, and customer-focused impact metrics (e.g., ride quality), (2) Develop Minimum Viable Products for top-priority use cases, and (3) Operationalize LAWHAR for promising customer applications. Phase II work supports NASA’s ATM-X project by providing a UAM weather guidance and route design capability to support UAM simulation and trade-space studies. It also supports NASA’s AAM National Campaign by providing a weather guidance SDSP for integrated testing with NASA and industry UAM traffic management tools.

Potential NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words):

(1) One-stop UAM weather guidance and airspace design tool to support NASA ATM-X project’s X-series of UAM simulations and other trade studies

(2) Create fine-scale urban wind fields to support NASA’s research on Strategic Planning with Unscented Optimal Guidance for UAM

(3) Fine-scale weather guidance to support NASA’s research of weather impacts on UAM/UAS ride quality, power consumption, and trajectory following

(4) Weather guidance SDSP and wind sensor placement guidance for supporting AAM National Campaign flight demonstrations

Potential Non-NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words):

(1) Wind hazard alerting and rerouting tool for rotorcraft, GA, UAS, and UAM operators

(2) Strategic decision support for Part 135 Emergency Medical Service rotorcraft operators (provides guidance on whether it is safe to fly patients to hospital helipads)

(3) Tool for urban meteorological sensor placement guidance

(4) Tool for assessing candidate Vertiport sites for expected wind hazard impacts

Duration:     24

Form Generated on 05/13/2021 14:42:32