April20 , 2024

Platform Aerospace Flies the Vanilla UAS for NASA in Thule, Greenland


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Vanilla Unmanned flew a mission for NASA to the inland sheet of Greenland.

Artic Vanilla

Vanilla recovered on the runway after a successful flight

Vanilla Unmanned flew a mission for NASA to the inland sheet of Greenland. Thule Air Base, now known as Pituffik Space Base, hosted Platform Aerospace to carry a sensor provided by the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS).

The scientific goal was to provide validation data for the ICESAT‐2 satellite, which can measure terrain height but cannot differentiate between snow and ice. Vanilla flew along the satellite track to measure snow depth on top of the ice, enabling improved calculations of ice volume. This payload was previously flown in Deadhorse, Alaska, in 2021 through a similar mission set.

The flight window in April 2023 presented very challenging weather over Greenland. Vanilla flew over 15‐hours duration across two flights, including flying through two in‐flight icing events.

Platform Aerospace continues to test and demonstrate environmental hardening technologies and techniques to operate the Vanilla UAV in subfreezing conditions, such as testing an anti‐icing coating on the propeller. The Danish Air Authorities, Thule Space Force Base, and NASA all gave airworthiness and airspace approvals, due to the flight paths covering multiple countries’ airspace.

Platform Aerospace thanks Pituffik Space Force Base and NASA with their help in airspace coordination, ground logistics, vehicles, and hangar use.

The baseline Vanilla UAS is not ITAR restricted and can be shipped internationally to provide worldwide support and operational capability.

About Platform Aerospace
Platform Aerospace is a service‐disabled veteran‐owned small business (SDVOSB) dedicated to supporting the warfighter by providing a groundbreaking ISR UAV that empowers warfighters with unmatched situational awareness and actionable intelligence. Through pioneering innovation, we redefine the standards of endurance to meet the ever‐evolving needs of global security.

If you are interested in learning more, please contact [email protected] or visit our website at https://platformaerospace.com/.

Contact Information:
Allegra Flores
[email protected]
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Original Source: Platform Aerospace Flies the Vanilla UAS for NASA in Thule, Greenland