Grant Agreement number: 711226

Acronym: A3R

Title: Air-to-Air Automatic Refueling

Type of the action: SME Instrument Phase 1: IT.1.2015 1: Small business innovation research for transport.

Current in-flight refuelling systems are unsafe and expensive. They require expert boomers and the process has an error probability that makes it riskier than taking off or landing. This is the main reason for its non-viability for civil avionics.

Our proposal A3R - Automatic Air-2-Air Refuelling System will improve the safety of in-flight refuelling process thanks to a set of patent-pending disruptive innovations:

    • 1. Intelligent vision system providing precise distance measurement between tanker, boom-tip and receiver’s fuel receptacle driven (ES-201630468 and ES-201531460).
      2. Augmented reality haptic user interface that provides boomers a more natural and intuitive mean to operate the boom (ES-201531426).
      3. Semi and full automatic flying-boom in-flight refuelling system and method (ES-201630480 and ES-201431734).
  • A3R makes possible bringing IFR to civilian avionics and making military refuelling safer because:

    • 1. A3R improves safety:
      • a. Strong reduction of human errors in IFR operations.
        b. Eliminates need for stages reducing the number of take-offs in a travel.
      2. A3R reduces costs:
      • a. Does not require expert boom operators (and associated expensive training).
        b. Reduces fuel consumption:
        • i. Avoiding stages (just 1 take-off per travel).
          ii. Avoiding aircrafts fuel deposit to be full, which reduces consumption during the take-off.
        c. Reduces complexity (and cost) of associated earth infrastructure, e.g. just 1 security control, 1 boarding process, simplified luggage management (also reducing overall energy consumption per travel at airports).
  • During this 5-month feasibility study (2016/02/01 – 2016/06/30) we have validated our technology and consolidated our business strategy. A3R brings a safer IFR solution to the avionics market by semi/fully automating IFR operations avoiding the human error and boomers workload.

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