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Release the CRACUNS! 3D Printed Drone Can Lurk Underwater for Months Before Launching Into the Air

by • March 20, 2016 • No Comments

20160317_image3_lgDrones are becoming additional and additional flexible and capable of things that were unheard of only a few years ago. We’re seeing 3D printing drones and firefighting drones. Futurists have predicted the possible existence of drones sizeable adequate to move houses in the upcoming century. We’ve seen submersible drones, but until now, we haven’t seen anything really like the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that researchers at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) have made. The Corrosion Resistant Aerial Covert Unmanned Nautical System (aka CRACUNS) is a submersible drone that can lurk underwater for as long as two months, and so commence into the air to carry out a variety of undertakings.

“Engineers at APL have long worked on both Navy submarine systems and autonomous UAVs,” said Jason Stipes of APL’s Sea Control Mission Area, project manager for CRACUNS. “In response to evolving sponsor challenges, we were inspired to create a vehicle that may operate both underwater and in the air.”


The 3D printed drone is lightmass but tough, capable of withstanding water pressure several hundred feet at a lower place the surface without requiring structural metal parts or machined surfaces. It can be docked either at an underwater station or on an unmanned submarine and regulated remotely; once its controllers have released the CRACUNS, it shoots to the surface, bobs for a moment, and so takes off into the air on its mysterious undertaking. The drone’s createers haven’t said what precisely those undertakings may be, but have stated that its resistance complex conditions and its “payload flexibility” make it perfect for a wide variety of applications.

commenceCRACUNS can operate effectively in either fresh or salt water; its sensitive components are sealed safely in a waterproof, pressure-resistant 3D printed vessel. Protective coatings were applied to the exposed motors, at that point the drone was submerged in salt water to test its resilience. After two months, the CRACUNS rose of the deep with no sign of corrosion or other injure, operating as effectively as it had preceding it was submerged.

“CRACUNS that good resultsfully demonstrated a new way of pondering of the fabrication and use of unmanned systems,” said Richard Hooks, an aerospace and mechanical engineer at APL, responsible for the 3D printed create of the drone.

3D printing the drone had a lot of advantages; moreover the light mass and strong waterproof structure, a 3D printed drone is in addition much cheaper to make, meaning that hordes of CRACUNS can be made and deployed for high-risk undertakings. If a drone is injured or destroyed, it’s effortless and inexpensive to replace it, that gives its operators a lot additional flexibility when it comes to its uses.

feed-167APL’s Force Projection Sector made the quadcopter along with fabrication experts of the the Research and Exploratory Development Department. The APL has eleven specific “undertaking areas,” all operating in the national security and defense sector. The Sea Control Mission Area, that was responsible for CRACUNS’ createment, mainly supports the US Navy.

“APL’s culture of innovation and undertaking-ready solutions continues to donate good results for our sponsors,” said Sea Control Mission Area Executive Christopher Watkins.

Whilst those particular sponsors weren’t named, it’s quite clear that CRACUNS is meant to play a worthwhile role in naval operations. How soon it can go into operation in addition remains to be seen, but I’m betting it won’t be long pondering how good resultsful it has been in testing. What do you ponder of the purpose this innovation is playing here? Discuss in the 3D Printed Drones forum over at 3DPB.com.