Thursday, June 18, 2015

2015-06-17: Autonomy Incubator Prepares for Deputy Administrator Visit

Our makeshift "cul-de-sac," complete with flowers and shrubs
As tomorrow afternoon's visit from Deputy Administrator Dava Newman draws ever nearer, the Autonomy Incubator (AI) team has been working with single-minded focus to get each "act" of the demonstration running smoothly. While the PIs split their time between readying their own short presentations and contributing to the live UAV presentation rehearsal, the AI student interns take a break from their research to put NASA and AI decals on quad-rotor cowlings and film test runs on the camcorder.

Perhaps the most impressive aspect of the already incredible UAV presentation is just how seamless it is— tree-dodging flows into package delivery and then into "Dances with Drones", which flows straight into multi-UAV coordinated flight.  This demonstration is intended to take every dimension of the AI's research portfolio and incorporate it into one cohesive narrative, with help from a full set complete with three prop houses and an entire forest of fake trees and flowers. We might be biased, but we think this is going to be the most impressive—and most difficult— demo we've ever done.

Theatrics aside, look at how industriously everyone in the lab is working! The atmosphere is intense but excited; it feels like aerospace Christmas Eve here in Building 1222.

Loc and Gil make some network adjustments
Jim and Garry discuss how to best showcase the lidar
Michael and Lauren cut out the paper decals for the UAVs
Jeremy outfits a UAV with official NASA and AI decals

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