Australian agency Aerosonde Pty Ltd. developed the Aerosonde Robotic Aircraft as an economical means of making observations with sizeable operational flexibility. The company’s program was originally aimed at making meteorological observations in distant, inaccessible, and remote areas. However, after several tests, many other useful functions for the aircraft have been discovered and taken into consideration.
This $50,000 robot can be launched from the back of a small truck and can measure temperature, pressure, and humidity. Aerosonde can even measure the wind velocity at the eye of a storm. The agency hopes that through this robotic aircraft, they will be able to find ways of predicting changes in hurricane intensity.
In 1999, Aerosonde Pty Ltd and Aerosonde North America Inc. were formed to supply global operations for their class aircrafts. Seven years later, they were acquired by AAI Corp. Together, NASA and NOAA commissioned the Aerosonde UAV to explore the dynamics of hurricanes by traveling into the eyes and sending valuable data to a home base.