Meet the Lab
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The Unmanned Systems Lab brings together a diverse collection of researchers to a common facility dedicated to autonomous and remotely operated systems development and integration. Areas of expertise include:
- air and ground vehicle design
- ground control stations
- vision and LIDAR systems
- image and signal processing
- vehicle testing
It is the goal and seven-year track record of the Unmanned Systems Laboratory to offer turnkey solutions. From design to fabrication to test - let us solve your problems!
USL and VT Police Dept. Receive Powered Parachute
October 1, 2011 -- The Unmanned Systems Laboratory and the Virginia Tech Police Department have received a powered parachute for research work. Read the full story here: Powered Parachute takes crime-fighting to new heights (WDBJ7 News)
Ground Robot Deployment and Tension Control
April 26, 2011 -- One of the Unmanned System's Laboratory's most recent flights demonstrated, for the first time, deployment of a robotic ground vehicle which has been under development at the lab. The robot is paired with a helicopter-mounted winch system, which raises and lowers the robot and provides emergency release functionality. Watch the video for details (available in HD)!
Stereovision Data Collection Flight
April 14, 2011 -- Today's brilliantly sunny April weather gave the USL the perfect opportunity to conduct a stereovision test flight. During this flight, at the Kentland Farms location outside of Blacksburg, the stereo boom system (two cameras and an IMU) gathered data and took a series of pictures for 3D reconstruction back at the lab. Check out the video to see the flight and results (available in HD).
Virginia Could Become a Testing Area for Civilian Use
By Richard Foster | Fri Aug 31, 2012 06:00 AM ET
"The public historically has been a little timid about new technology — airplanes, fast cars, whatever, you know?" says Kevin Kochersberger, director of the Unmanned Systems Laboratory at Virginia Tech's College of Engineering. "It's human nature to be a little skeptical of technology, but there are many upsides to this technology that people aren't seeing." Full Story
Engineering team developing helicopter that would investigate nuclear disasters
By Steven Mackay
BLACKSBURG, Va., March 10, 2010 -- Students at Virginia Tech's Unmanned Systems Laboratory are perfecting an autonomous helicopter they hope will never be used for its intended purpose. Roughly six feet long and weighing 200 pounds, the re-engineered aircraft is designed to fly into American cities blasted by a nuclear weapon or dirty bomb... Full Story
More About the Lab....
The lab has worked with numerous sponsors, including Pacific Northwest National Labs (PNL), Savannah River National Labs (SRNL), the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) and AAI corp.
The lab operates under the Mechanical Engineering Department at Virginia Tech. It serves as a base for numerous senior design and graduate research projects. A brief summary of select projects may be viewed in the Projects section of the website.