News story

Ultra-lightweight optical system for aerial ground imaging

Case study from Glyndŵr Innovations who pitched their ideas to industry and investors at the CDE Marketplace on 27 April 2016.

Glyndŵr Innovations ultra-lightweight optical systems.

Glyndŵr Innovations ultra-lightweight optical systems.

Through Centre for Defence Enterprise (CDE) funding, Glyndŵr Innovations has developed an ultra-lightweight optical system for use on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for aerial ground imaging applications where weight is critical.

A complete working demonstrator has been developed and built, weighing less than 1 kg excluding sensor, and sample images have been taken. The images show that the principles of the design are sound and provide a good basis for further development. The low weight of the system, when used on a UAV, will allow the aircraft to remain airborne for longer periods.

Next steps for Glyndŵr Innovations include developing the design, reducing the mass and space even further and making the system adaptable for a wider range of imaging uses.

Richard Hazelwood, Sales Executive, Glyndŵr Innovations says:

The involvement with CDE and the ‘persistent surveillance from the air’ project has enabled us to take an idea we had and develop a fully functional lightweight optical system. This has developed considerable interest from a number of potential customers who were looking for just this capability.

Glyndŵr Innovations is based in North Wales and is part of Glyndwr University. The company designs and builds optical support systems. The Glyndŵr Innovations team has core skills in optics, opto-mechanical systems and systems involving precision actuation and is supported by metrology and engineering teams based on site. The team has successfully completed projects for many sectors including space science, aerospace, astronomy and medical.

View the presentation slides.

About CDE

CDE funds novel, high-risk, high-potential-benefit research. We work with the broadest possible range of science and technology providers, including academia and small companies, to develop cost-effective capabilities for UK armed forces and national security.

CDE is part of Dstl.

Centre for Defence Enterprise

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Harwell Oxford
OX11 0QX

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Published 20 April 2016