South Dakota Patent of the Month – September 2022

Aerostar International, Inc. (Aerostar) has been developing lifesaving solutions for over 65 years. With products ranging from stratospheric balloons to radar systems to protective wear, the company is truly a leader in the world of highly technical Aerospace & Defense solutions. The company doesn’t stop at the stratosphere though, bringing their expertise to the world of security as well.

Data connectivity is an increasingly important component of our modern world. Despite this importance, there are many areas of the world where data connectivity is limited – or nonexistent. Aerostar has designed a stratospheric balloon system, equipped with solar panels, that are meant to bridge this gap.

The balloons can be used to form a balloon network – a system that can extend connectivity to remote regions. The use of solar panels ensures the network is not restricted by limited power sources. The panels are positioned with Z-formations to maximize solar exposure and power generation. The panels are held in and deployed once the balloons reach their required height. This deployment method also ensures the balloons can be deployed with ease and without the need of human intervention.

Aerostar’s lighter-than-air platforms have helped NASA, Google, the U.S. Air Force, and numerous others achieve dynamic missions, including communications, data relay, surveillance, intelligence, and more.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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