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AHS seeking innovative UAV student designs

September 3, 2014  By Carey Fredericks

Sept. 3, 2014, Alexandria, Va. - AHS International has announced that the Request for Proposals for the 32nd Annual AHS International Student Design Competition, sponsored by The Boeing Company, is now posted at www.vtol.org/sdc.

The 2015 challenge presented by The Boeing Company – entitled "Distributed Logistics in an Urban Setting Using Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles" — was developed by the AHS International Student Design Competition Steering Committee, including representatives from The Boeing Company and the U.S. Army’s Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Centre’s (AMRDEC) Aviation Development Directorate (ADD). Continuing advances in microprocessors, microelectronic sensors, electric motors and batteries point to emerging opportunities to provide rapid aerial delivery of small cargos over the "last-mile,” directly to the point of need.  These small UAS logistics vehicles, when working together with larger cargo air vehicles, can form a complete aerial shipping system that rapidly takes goods from factory/warehouse all the way to the individual consumer.  Such a system of vehicles has been seen as having positive impacts in both the commercial marketplace, where on-demand delivery is a premium service, and the military where getting supplies to the point-of-the-spear quickly and efficiently by air has been shown to improve military effectiveness and reduce soldier exposure to enemy forces.  This RFP explores the design of such a small, distributed logistics, delivery vehicle and its role in a large logistics system concept.

The Boeing Company will provide $12,000 for the awards through AHS International. All award monies will be provided in U.S. dollars. Submittals are judged in three (3) categories:

Undergraduate category:
1. 1st place: $2,000
2. 2nd place: $1,000
3. 3rd place: $500
4. Best New Entrant: $500

Graduate category:
1. 1st place: $2,500
2. 2nd place: $1,250
3. 3rd place: $750
4. Best New Entrant: $500


Hardware validation bonus (optional): $500 (one undergraduate and one graduate team winner) awarded independent of the paper design portion of the competition.

Certificates of achievement will be presented to each member of the winning teams and to their faculty advisors for display at their school.  The first place winner or a team representative each for the graduate and undergraduate categories is expected to present a technical summary of their design at AHS International’s 72nd Annual Forum & Technology Display during May 17-19, 2016 in West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S.  AHS will provide the presenters with complimentary registration and payment of up to $1,000 in travel expenses for each 1st place team to help defray the cost of attendance.

A Letter of Intent to participate must be received no later than February 9, 2015 and must include the team members, whether it is a graduate or undergraduate team, their faculty sponsor and email addresses for all participants. Requests for information and clarification will be accepted continuously but must be received no later than April 27, 2015.  All responses will be posted by March 26.  Teams must submit the Hardware Validation (optional) pre-test predictions no later than April 3. Proposals must be submitted no later than May 29. AHS Headquarters will notify the winners by August 20, 2015.


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