Form 9.B Project Summary



Proposal Number:


Project Title:

Low Cost Beaconless Laser Search and

Rescue System

Technical Abstract (Limit 200 words)

A new beaconless technique for search and rescue

is proposed that promises to be simpler and more

cost-effective than existing techniques. This new

technique incorporates a laser scanner instrument

and unique passive retroreflector markers attached

to aircraft and watercraft to accomplish detection in

the presence of glint and other background

reflections with a very low false alarm rate. It will

permit rapidly searching large areas in daylight or

night conditions. The new technique builds upon the

experience gained from a similar LASAR (LAser

Search And Rescue) technique, now in the

prototype testing stage, but utilizes simpler and

lower cost system components than the existing

technique. These simplifications would result in

reductions in the instrument size, weight, and power

requirements. This smaller, lower cost, instrument

could be installed onto light aircraft such as the

Cessna-172 used by the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) or

the HH55 helicopter used by the U.S. Coast Guard

(USCG). The proposed work will determine the

feasibility of the new technique through

experiments conducted using the existing prototype

laser scanner system (LASAR) developed by

Daedalus. The feasibility test results will be

analyzed with regard to the requirements of typical

CAP and USCG search and rescue scenarios.

Potential Commercial Applications (Limit 200 words)

A large international market exists for instruments

to assist in the search and rescue operations for

survivors of airplane crashes and boat accidents.

The high failure rate and high false alarm rate

caused by unintentional activation of emergency

radio beacons have produced a need for an

alternative means of improving search and rescue

operations. The proposed laser search and rescue

technique offers a cost-effective alternative to

emergency radio beacons. A commercial market

will exist in the United States provided that the U.S.

government mandates are established to require

the installation of air and watercraft retroreflector

markers and government agencies commit to the

use of the instrument on search and rescue aircraft.

It is estimated that those mandates and

commitments would result in a worldwide market

for more than 340 instruments and over 7,000,000

square feet of retroreflector material.

Name and Address of Principal Investigator (Name,

Organization Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)

Karl G. Wesolowicz

Daedalus Enterprises, Inc.

300 Parkland Plaza

Ann Arbor , MI 48103

Name and Address of Offeror (Firm Name, Mail Address,


Charles G. Stanich

Daedalus Enterprises, Inc.

300 Parkland Plaza

Ann Arbor , MI 48103