An international student team (Team AREND) is collaborating to compete in the Wildlife Conservation UAV Challenge – to design, build & fly an unmanned aircraft system (UAS) to support anti-poaching operations in South Africa. This student team is led by Dr. Jean Koster at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and includes teams from Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, University of Pretoria SA, and the University of Stuttgart.
Also collaborating with and supporting / sponsoring this student team is Wildlife Protection Solutions, Helios Torque Fusion, Inc, and NIST - the National Institute for Standards and Technology. Wildlife Protection Solutions (WPS) is an international non-profit group dedicated to the conservation of endangered species. Their current focus is on the five species of rhinos world-wide, with a special emphasis on creating habitat and breeding programs that will allow rhino populations to grow faster than they are being poached. Helios Torque Fusion, Inc. is a Colorado-based business working to commercialise hybrid-electric propulsion systems for UAS, making the aircraft more fuel-efficient and quieter – both important for wildlife monitoring & protection. Video.