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KEF's Tailwind™ software provides low-drift and robust VIO during even highly dynamic flight maneuvers. Tailwind runs on a wide range of cameras and compute, providing drift rates around 2% of distance traveled while providing the real time performance needed for closed-loop autonomous operations. The software performance has been validated at speeds up to 100 mph, on a range of platforms, and at a variety of altitudes, but most of our performance metrics are from flights below 400’ AGL.
Our VIO offers best in class performance in day or night conditions, but hasn’t yet been qualified in extreme weather or atmospheric conditions such as dust/smoke/fog.
Operations leveraging VIO might require an operator to understand basic camera/drone calibration methods, but the capability can operate seamlessly, offering flight performance on par with GPS when in operator piloted modes.
Tailwind allows for night operations using low-light and Infrared cameras, with drift rates similar to those observed during the daytime. Instead of LIDAR or RADAR-based navigation methods, our systems enable dynamic missions that demand stealth or surprise.
VISUAL POSITIONING FOR LONG-RANGE GPS-DENIED FLIGHTS
KEF can provide an aircraft with a GPS-like location estimate using visual landmarks and publicly available maps, or “Terrain Relative Navigation” (TRN). Our solution has been deployed in day, night, and visually degraded environments. We’ve run TRN on low cost computers and cameras at low altitudes while maintaining our world-class performance.