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shakari
19 Aug 05,, 16:48
Hi all,
I'm new here but I'm impressed by the level of discussion here. I'm a mechanical engineer. I'm having an idea for a long time. I was thinking about "eye in the sky". The design is a spherical body with a coaxial-multirotor fans(so no tail rotor) on top of it. The sperical body can be made of a lot of small facets to minimise radar signature (since electric motors are used so no thermal signature either). but the basic idea is to make this helicopter like thing using electric motors and mount a camera on it with indeed the needed actuators for tilt/pan/zoom. the entire size is not going to be bigger than a football for the base body. the rotor fans can be or can not be made of foldable type.
Now is the point. Having a data link with the ground base of optical fiber and power supply too from the ground by a cable (the cable can be made with both optical fiber data link and electric supply wires embedded in it, and even of the color of sky blue for obvious reasons). So this eliminates the need for mounting the power source on the craft and reduses the size very much(compared to payload) plus gives it practically infinite hovering ability(limited by the supply from ground though).
Now if this craft can be flown from a outpost or from a vehical(like dingo II which has already got hybrid engines so no add anything for power) upto 2-3 kilometers one should be able to get the view of upto 70 kilometers easily(I haven't flied much only in glider but there I used to get enormus field of view at the altitute of 800 FEET) moreover with 2 meter high body we easily get the view of upto 100 meters.
Now this has several possible applications. One is indeed recon. since you can take images. One can also scan the field real time. The best part is complete radio silence
The main application I though is that in artillery(by the view of upto 70 kilometers that is typical range for most of the heavy guns even less for SP guns so in fact this best be used in SP guns in that case it will be safer to counter battery fire). This can bypass the need of FOP(to a large extant if not completely). Putting thermal sights or EVS(enhanced vision system) will make it very effactive in night time.
Of course there are limitations. One is cloudy or windy wheather( in rain if one will still try he/she shall be fried by THUNDERBOLT :cool: ). Other is the possibility of enemy seeing you and possibly counter battery attack. Now for that I thought of flying the thing not straight upright but at an angle of say 30 to 45 digree at random in random direction. Still it will be able to focus the view on the target area.
What I mainly want to know is the opinion of people with real life field experience about the feasibility of such system. I mean what will be the worth of the system in the field? If there are other possible problems I an eager to know.
PS This will violate OOE's principal that artillery people should not SEE enemy for in this case they will be SEEING the enemy all the time ;)
Think of increase in the ability of salvo weapons at night time :cool:

Officer of Engineers
20 Aug 05,, 04:19
PS This will violate OOE's principal that artillery people should not SEE enemy for in this case they will be SEEING the enemy all the time ;)

If the gunners are watching that thing instead of laying down a barrage, I will have their hides. Your toy would be watched and controlled by the FOPs, not the gunners.

shakari
20 Aug 05,, 05:42
If the gunners are watching that thing instead of laying down a barrage, I will have their hides. Your toy would be watched and controlled by the FOPs, not the gunners.
Thanks Colonel!
I was under impression that FOP's remain CLOSE to the enemy (less than 10 kilometers) while this "toy" can possibly give the accurate sight of upto 70 kilometers so that one can have FOP's close to the artillery. But thats merely a technical issue about the term FOP.
I'm more eager to know if there is any work going on in the direction of making such device. Or is it not very useful to have such device. Why it's not made yet. In TOW the optical fiber data link sustains for upto 3.5 kilometers so I don't think that should be a problem.
There is work being done is the direction of UAV's to do such job but they are all winged since I've not heard of any other design. An Israeli firm is working on mini remote controlled unmanned helicopter for the purpose of recon..
But whereever there is remote control there are waves with their signature and possibility of Jamming. The new concept is to use wire link for complete radio silence and real time data transfer as well as for power supply.
The power from ground eliminates a lotta problems right away. The basic thing is that this "toy" will be very cheap. Eliminating the otherwise predominant need for efficiency of electric motors Lunar motors can be used which have very high power to weight ratio and they are cheap too.
And after even the gyro is implemented electrically(by a $15 circuit instead of 3000$ previous design) eliminating vibration and stability of the craft can also be done cheaply.
So the small cost and small size of the "concept"(since it's just a concept afterall) makes it very practical. Not to mention it's ability to take other sensers at the ltitude of 2 kilometers like radio antena or radar detecter sensers(the equipment can be on ground since only the senser needs to taken high). This all might add a lot to the ground forces abulity compared to the size and cost. the basic concept is not to use craft as areial vehical but rather a loooong mast. So is there something along the lines being built or there is some serious flaw in the concept thats what I'm more curious to know.

Officer of Engineers
20 Aug 05,, 06:20
Thanks Colonel!
I was under impression that FOP's remain CLOSE to the enemy (less than 10 kilometers) while this "toy" can possibly give the accurate sight of upto 70 kilometers so that one can have FOP's close to the artillery. But thats merely a technical issue about the term FOP.

They have to find the enemy and then be able to get close.


I'm more eager to know if there is any work going on in the direction of making such device. Or is it not very useful to have such device. Why it's not made yet. In TOW the optical fiber data link sustains for upto 3.5 kilometers so I don't think that should be a problem.


The problem as before is bandwidth and power requirement. TOW missile wires are only for control, not powering the rocket.


There is work being done is the direction of UAV's to do such job but they are all winged since I've not heard of any other design. An Israeli firm is working on mini remote controlled unmanned helicopter for the purpose of recon..
But whereever there is remote control there are waves with their signature and possibility of Jamming. The new concept is to use wire link for complete radio silence and real time data transfer as well as for power supply.

Also a direct lead back to the FOP if spotted. Signals require traffic analysis. Also, one FOP can manage several UAVs flying alot further ... and alot closer to the ground.

An old saying in recee, a two inch lense 2000 ft in the sky will never replace a pair of eyes on the ground. Just because you can see further does not negate the need to see closer.


The power from ground eliminates a lotta problems right away. The basic thing is that this "toy" will be very cheap. Eliminating the otherwise predominant need for efficiency of electric motors Lunar motors can be used which have very high power to weight ratio and they are cheap too.

No such thing as cheap.

shakari
20 Aug 05,, 17:43
They have to find the enemy and then be able to get close.
Thanks. I understand now.



The problem as before is bandwidth and power requirement. TOW missile wires are only for control, not powering the rocket.
Thats why optical fiber that has a lot more bandwidth compared to twisted pair or other metalic wire. Indeed TWO doesn't get power by data link wire. What I meant was that effective real time data transfer by optical fiber data link of VERY thin cable is already implemented. For power to this craft one doesn't need thick wires. 12V DC via very thin wires will be enough IMHO since the ampearage will be relatively low anyway.



Also a direct lead back to the FOP if spotted. Signals require traffic analysis. Also, one FOP can manage several UAVs flying alot further ... and alot closer to the ground.
Thats the basic problem with this thing. What I thought is that if used say 10 kilometers interior to the line I think the wire can't be seen. I know binoculers can't. For observation of some sesitive points from FAR behind perticulerly effective to be used with a salvo weapon. The unique feature you obtain in this craft is indefinite hovering time and a stationary and stable platform compared to UAVs.
I think at night time this might be very useful for area observation and continual sevellience.
Even in day time how much are the chances of a foot ball sized thing being seen 10 kilometers away? And a cable <= 5mm thick 10 kilometers away.
I'm not saying this can exactly replace the role of UAV or FOP or enhance any of them, may be this might not fit in the current flow of information structure but the thing has some real applications and abilities of it's own IMHO.


An old saying in recee, a two inch lense 2000 ft in the sky will never replace a pair of eyes on the ground. Just because you can see further does not negate the need to see closer.
Ahha! Thats something information from the field! Thanks.



No such thing as cheap.
I didn't get this sir! Cost isn't an issue??? Suppose this equipment costs about the cost of 10 rifels. Than it's certainly cheap. It will be very small and light weight too. But isn't cost one of the factors that limit the number of pieces produced??? What is the defining factor in the production of number of stinger missiles???

I'm not here to argue any point for I don't have any. I seriously think that there is some serious use of such craft that are unique to it. But this is not being produced than what is the reason? I mean no work is being done along these lines. I understand USA or other first/second world countries are not doing any for they have predator and global hawk and very good satellites. But there are armies that don't have such luxuries and they do have to care a lot about cost. Something like this context I thought of this "toy".
But even in the first world armies this has some unique features to offer. Though not as much as I though it would :frown: .
Or am I wrong somewhere? Where?

Officer of Engineers
20 Aug 05,, 20:09
Thats why optical fiber that has a lot more bandwidth compared to twisted pair or other metalic wire.

You've misunderstood. Walk around with a pair of binoculars on your eyes all day. Even if its 1x so that you don't have depth perception problems, what kind of situational awareness have you lost? Your peripheral vision is gone and so is your sense of balance. No amount of signals is going to replace a human being's situational awareness. Thus, even with fibre optics, you still have to decide what to see and what not to see.


Indeed TWO doesn't get power by data link wire. What I meant was that effective real time data transfer by optical fiber data link of VERY thin cable is already implemented. For power to this craft one doesn't need thick wires. 12V DC via very thin wires will be enough IMHO since the ampearage will be relatively low anyway.

Look at your telephone chord.


Thats the basic problem with this thing. What I thought is that if used say 10 kilometers interior to the line I think the wire can't be seen. I know binoculers can't. For observation of some sesitive points from FAR behind perticulerly effective to be used with a salvo weapon. The unique feature you obtain in this craft is indefinite hovering time and a stationary and stable platform compared to UAVs.

You've misunderstood again. Once your toy is spotted, we know within 10kms where the FOP is. Not a good idea.


I think at night time this might be very useful for area observation and continual sevellience.
Even in day time how much are the chances of a foot ball sized thing being seen 10 kilometers away? And a cable <= 5mm thick 10 kilometers away.
I'm not saying this can exactly replace the role of UAV or FOP or enhance any of them, may be this might not fit in the current flow of information structure but the thing has some real applications and abilities of it's own IMHO.

Does your toy have a niche role? Perhaps but in order to successfully market it to the military, you have to be precise in what it can do and what it CANNOT do. Is this a recee tool or a battle surveillance tool?

At the minimum, you need to include IR into it. Radar would be a nice touch but that's adding weight and size.


I didn't get this sir! Cost isn't an issue??? Suppose this equipment costs about the cost of 10 rifels. Than it's certainly cheap. It will be very small and light weight too. But isn't cost one of the factors that limit the number of pieces produced??? What is the defining factor in the production of number of stinger missiles???

What's its intended role? What kind of training is required? What kind of new tactics (ie, get into place) is required? How much noise can the supporting vehilce make? What kind of protection is needed by the crew? What's the optimum range and how do we get into that range?

The cost of your toy is just one little piece.

shakari
21 Aug 05,, 12:23
You've misunderstood. Walk around with a pair of binoculars on your eyes all day. Even if its 1x so that you don't have depth perception problems, what kind of situational awareness have you lost? Your peripheral vision is gone and so is your sense of balance. No amount of signals is going to replace a human being's situational awareness. Thus, even with fibre optics, you still have to decide what to see and what not to see.
Understood.



Look at your telephone chord.
Thats not very thick either :)



You've misunderstood again. Once your toy is spotted, we know within 10kms where the FOP is. Not a good idea.
Why exaclty? I mean you'll just know that some FOP is there in 10 kilometers range. But you don't know the exact location for attack by indirect fire I think. So what else makes that such a bad idea?



Does your toy have a niche role? Perhaps but in order to successfully market it to the military, you have to be precise in what it can do and what it CANNOT do. Is this a recee tool or a battle surveillance tool?
What roles do YOU think better suited for it since now you know what it is?


At the minimum, you need to include IR into it. Radar would be a nice touch but that's adding weight and size.
IR is easy even EVS. I thought about radar since you need to place only the sensor and the rest of the thing can be done by analyzing signal on the ground but I think only passive radar and not the active one.



What's its intended role? What kind of training is required? What kind of new tactics (ie, get into place) is required? How much noise can the supporting vehilce make? What kind of protection is needed by the crew? What's the optimum range and how do we get into that range?

The cost of your toy is just one little piece.
Thanks for clarification.

Officer of Engineers
21 Aug 05,, 15:46
Thats not very thick either :)

How twisted is it? And how much more twisting can it get before it snaps at say 10kms range?


Why exaclty? I mean you'll just know that some FOP is there in 10 kilometers range. But you don't know the exact location for attack by indirect fire I think. So what else makes that such a bad idea?

Can you read a topigraphical map? Now that I think about it some more. This is not a practical idea. There's a reason why we don't fly kites in tree lines. There's a reason why we don't park a ARV in the open.

lemontree
22 Aug 05,, 09:09
Your design of the UAV is already been made by many nations. One of them is the Kamov-137.

shakari
24 Aug 05,, 10:19
How twisted is it? And how much more twisting can it get before it snaps at say 10kms range?
I don't know where you got this word "twisted". The twisted pair I mentioned is type of data transfer wire in which the pair of data transfer wires are twisted over each other to minimise noise through self induction. And as far as the problem of the cable getting twisted and streched and getting broken, some sensors and subrutine can be implemented at the point where wires are attached to the craft so the craft will orient itself in a manner so that the tesion in the wire and twist will always remain less than a predefined value. And the craft is not supposed to move upto ranges od 10 km. Just 2 km high and around 4 km horizontal that is around 3 km of cable.




Can you read a topigraphical map?
I'm sure sir! you meant topographic. What I thought is I've tried to show in the simple image that I've attached. What I meant is that the controller will not be RIGHT BELOW the craft but the craft will be horizontally 1-2 kilometers awayfrom the controller and as I mentioned I assummed that even if the craft is spotted the cable can't be seen from FAR. So assuming cable is not visible knowing the topography will not help since the controller is not right below the craft so still there is entire range of at least 2 kilometers where the controller can be. Though the assumption of cable not being visible might not always hold in that case you are right. even if the controller will be our of the feild of view he CAN be pinpointed knowing the terrain.

Now that I think about it some more. This is not a practical idea. There's a reason why we don't fly kites in tree lines. There's a reason why we don't park a ARV in the open.
Though I understand the thing does not have much use in attack but I still think it can be a good battle feild surveillence tool. Thanks for the information.

@lemontree Thanks for the info. I'm really NOT surprized to see the EXACT design as I thought. Though it's already 9 Yesr old :frown: .
BTW I got WAB as second link in google while typing keywords Kamov-137 :tongue: .