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Autonomous Systems


Autonomy Considerations for Stratospheric High Altitude Pseudo-Satellites made in Bavaria

High Altitude Pseudo-Satellites (HAPS) are a type of aircraft filling the gap between satellites and unmanned aircraft. Their ability to focus on a limited target area while providing uninterrupted communication and Earth observation services usually associated with satellites over long time periods, referred to as ‚local persistence‘, is their particular characteristic. Technically speaking they are unmanned solar powered flying platforms whose batteries are charged during daytime allowing flying to continue during the night.


Project lead:
Dr. Erwin Stenzel (Airbus)

Project partners:
Airbus, University of Federal Armed Forces Munich, DLR, Munich University

Currently, conducting such a mission requires a large operating team of approximately 12 staff. More efficient operating conditions have yet to be implemented to make it viable for commercial applications. StraVARIA is therefore aimed at improving the degree of automation in mission planning, monitoring and execution as well as more energy-efficient mission planning for better utilisation of the solar powered propulsion system.