Ohio/Indiana UAS test center to host NASA-backed contest

The Ohio/Indiana Unmanned Aircraft Systems Center & Test Complex reported yesterday that it will host the NASA Unmanned Aircraft Systems Airspace Operations Challenge in April.

The goal of the competition is to help pave the way for UAS in the national airspace by developing appropriate sense and avoid technology. It will take place April 28 to May 2 at the center’s Camp Atterbury site in Indiana and feature $500,000 in prizes.

Following a public review, NASA recently approved the rules for Phase 1 of the competition. According to the test center, NASA is working to provide an air traffic environment where UAS operators can “demonstrate the technologies necessary to operate safely in the same airspace as other aircraft, including civil, commercial and military aviation.”

A Phase 2 competition is expected to follow about a year after Phase 1 and feature up to $1 million in additional prize money. Early bird team registration, which runs through Nov. 15, is $5,000. More information and online registration is available at uasaoc.org.

Ohio and Indiana have also teamed to pursue designation as one of six federal test sites for research into unmanned aircraft systems. Those sites are scheduled to be announced before the end of the year.

[ image courtesy of the UAS Airspace Operations Challenge ]