Out Of This World: Santa Barbara Company Produces Saucer-Shaped UAVs

aerobatWEB1Aerobat Aviation’s carbon fiber two-meter Geobat drone. From left, Craig
Minor, Steven Goodman and Michael Wynne. (courtesy photo)

Flying saucers have landed in Santa Barbara.
Aerobat Aviation, a Santa Barbara firm with ties to Georgia, is planning to take its saucer-shaped unmanned aerial vehicle, or UAV, on the road in the
coming months hoping to raise $5 million from investors.

The company was founded in July 2010 with an air frame designed by Georgia inventor Jack Jones. The frame itself looks sort of like a flying saucer11/2/13 Out of this world: Santa Barbara company produces saucer-shaped UAVs | Pacific Coast Business Times
www.pacbiztimes.com/2013/11/01/out-of-this-world-santa-barbara-company-produces-saucer-shaped-uavs/ 2/5 with the a large cut-out toward the back, blending the best of saucer and hollow-ring designs that have been tried, and discarded, in the past. The
company believes that the frame, called the GeoBat, will let the craft handle better in windy conditions and carry heavier payloads for its size than a
traditional tube-and-wing UAV.

But the novel shape is only part of the story, said co-founder Travis Shannon. He said the real key to delivering a functional saucer-shaped UAV will be the guidance system and how well it works with whatever kind of sensors the user, whether it’s farmers or the military, wants to put on the craft. That is where Aerobat is hoping its product, which has been developed with funds from friends and family, will be a winner.

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