Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Cloudless – Polish universal stratospheric UAV

 The Polish startup, Cloudless, is working on universal stratospheric drones. In April, they performed a successful flight of the ULEP-1 [Ultra Long Endurance Platform] unmanned aerial vehicle from an altitude of over 24 km. Such drones will soon allow for numerous scientific research, Earth imaging, and even replace satellites.

On Sunday, April 18, the Cloudless unmanned aircraft with a five-meter wingspan, after an hour of climb under a special balloon, began an autonomous flight at an altitude of over 24 km. After 2.5 hours of travel, it landed precisely in the previously designated place.

Stratospheric drones will be able to conduct various scientific research in various fields - e.g. meteorology, environmental protection or space engineering. All you need to do is attach appropriate equipment to the plane to measure, for example, the concentration of ozone or dust.

The creators of Cloudless have an ambitious goal - they want to create stratospheric drones that will become pseudo-satellites. Theoretically, solar planes can float in the skies even for a year without landing. They will perform similar functions as orbital satellites, only moving many times closer to the Earth.

The company is ready to start scientific research in the field of meteorology or space research.

A little more time is needed to build a pseudo satellite. It will take around two years.

A short video from the test flight can be seen here.