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SGE Highlights: July 19, 2017
Significant Announcements:


  • The FrankenRaven modular UAS (shown below) took to the air for the first time on 28 June 2017 at Crows Landing Airfield in Central California. This completes the fixed-wing portion of the Stanford LEARN-2 program “Modular UAS Design for Autonomy Research.”

The aircraft was manually flown in stock form (50-inch wingspan, shown below on the left) to test the modular avionics system and the airframe.  After landing, the FrankenRaven was reconfigured with a longer wingspan by virtue of a 3D-printed “splice” to connect wing segments together, Lego™-like. The now-reconfigured aircraft was signed off and manually flown in a matter of minutes, as shown below on the right.


Ethan Pinsker Launches FrankenRaven 1 of 2
Ethan Pinsker Launches FrankenRaven 2 of 2

Aircraft engineer Ethan Pinsker hand launches a FrankenRaven with OEM wing (top) and the same Frankencraft with an extended modular wing (bottom).


Key Meetings/Events/Conferences and Attendees (Provide a list of upcoming key meetings or events, provide the purpose, names of high-profile attendees expected, and meeting location):

  • Diana Gentry, Team Member on Planetary Science and Technology from Analog Research (PSTAR) funded project "FELDSPAR", will travel in support of microbiological sample analysis in the on-site laboratory in Iceland, 07/07/17 – 07/27/17. 
  • Donald Sullivan will support the Global Hawk Hands On Project Experience-East Pacific Origins Characteristics of Hurricanes (HOPE-EPOCH) campaign, Armstrong Flight Research Center (AFRC), Edwards, CA 07/23/17 – 07/28/17.
  • Vern Vanderbilt will present research results at the NCTS#27611-17 IGARSS (International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium), Fort Worth, TX, 07/23/17 – 07/29/17.

"Estimating Leaf Water Status from VIS-NIR Reflectance and Transmittance."

  • Christopher Potter will carry out field work and image ground truth validation near the village of Tanana Alaska to support carbon cycle research as a science team investigator on the Arctic Boreal Vulnerability Experiment (ABoVE) NASA field campaign, 07/24/17 – 08/03/17.
  • Matthew Johnson will be visiting research scientists at NOAA/ESRL in order to initiate collaborative research which was budgeted in the recently NASA-funded Interdisciplinary Science (NNH16ZDA001N-IDS) proposal titled "What is the role of natural wetlands, lakes and reservoirs in the contemporary global methane cycle? Integrating new approaches to source characterization, observation-anchored models, and CarbonTracker-CH4 assessments" (Proposal No.: 16-IDS16-0089).  This work applies the NOAA CarbonTracker-Lagrange (CT-L) model, which will be run by M. Johnson at NASA ARC and was developed by the research scientist at NOAA/ESRL.  This visit (which was budgeted/funded in our IDS proposal) will be critical for M. Johnson to better

            understand and work on the CT-L model for application in the NASA-funded IDS proposed work, Boulder, CO 08/06/17 – 08/08/17.

  • Liane Guild, United States Coral Reef Task Force Meeting 08/07/17 – 08/12/17 ( Represent NASA as the point of contact for the NASA member of the United States Coral Reef Task Force (Executive Order). Representing Dr. Paula Bontempi, Headquarters Program Manager of Ocean

Biology and Biogeochemistry, Carbon Cycle and Ecosystems Focus Area Lead, Fort Lauderdale, FL 08/06/17  – 08/13/17.

  • Vern Vanderbilt will present his talk at the NCTS# 27722-17 SPIE Optics and Photonics,

            San Diego, CA, 08/07/17 – 08/10/17.

“Estimating the relative water content of leaves in a cotton canopy.”

  • Donald Sullivan, Joseph Skiles, Matthew Johnson and Liane Guild will be attending the NCTS # 28919-18 American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting 2017 in New Orleans, LA 12/10/17 – 12/16/17.  

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