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Test and Evaluation

Engineers carry a large quadcopter into a field for testing.

Engineers carry a large quadcopter into a field for testing.

MAAP has conducted thousands of research and test flights for complex use cases, including NASA and FAA UTM projects involving dozens of participants at a time. Our team’s comprehensive talent set enables us to successfully execute large-scale projects through detailed test planning, engineering evaluation, operations employment, and safety oversight.

UAS Engineering and Airworthiness

MAAP’s skilled engineering team has experience in building and modifying UAS as well as performing airworthiness evaluations and aircraft performance validation. In addition to conducting our own airworthiness reviews, MAAP also supports industry type certification programs and other external airworthiness evaluations as a neutral third party. Our facilities can support the design, modification, and validation of many different types of unmanned aircraft systems.  

Injury Risk Assessment and Testing

Over the course of multiple projects evaluating the risk posed by UAS to human beings, MAAP has pioneered the development of impact test methods to determine the severity of injuries resulting from impact with a UAS. This industry-leading research has been made possible by our collaboration with Virginia Tech’s renowned Center for Injury Biomechanics (CIB), a partnership that has yielded data to support groundbreaking FAA waivers for operations over people and moving vehicles. MAAP and CIB also support testing for Category 2, 3, and 4 vehicles seeking to operate over people. 

Standards Testing

The development of consensus industry standards is foundational to  a safe, reliable, interoperable UAS ecosystem. Members of our staff serve on a host of standards committees, including in leadership positions. 

In addition, our research directly addresses crucial emerging and finalized industry consensus standards. We have the capacity and expertise to test to a wide range of these, including parachute, detect and avoid, communications, and impact standards. 

Sensor Characterization and DAA Simulation

MAAP has evaluated numerous detect and avoid (DAA) sensors and C2 (Command and Control) systems in accordance with emerging standards from RTCA SC-228 and ASTM F38 committees, often as part of major NASA and FAA research initiatives. Recent research has involved the characterization of radar and acoustic DAA sensors on both airborne and ground-based platforms. Additionally, to support the end-to-end evaluation of DAA systems for FAA approval, MAAP has developed in-house airspace encounter simulation tools. These tools are based on NASA and FAA alerting and guidance modules and allow us to quantitatively assess air risk and the ability of the UAS to maintain “well-clear.”