Traditional engineering design processes focus on the generation of a completely defined solution for a specific set of design requirements. However, in the modern, rapidly evolving battlespace, Soldiers face the need for situationally specific aerial reconnaissance. Recent advances in automated manufacturing techniques, such as 3-D printing, have enabled the design of small unmanned aerial vehicles in which discrete components can be integrated with parametrically scaled and printed components. This approach enables mission-driven sizing, design, and synthesis of a product family using a small set of components. An integrated requirements and design process that separates the Soldier from any design engineering is presented. Mission requirements, performance models, component attributes, and manufacturing constraints are used to suggest a product architecture capable of fulfilling requirements. The process is executed to design an on-demand solution to specific aerial reconnaissance needs. Assembly takes place in a virtual environment prior to physical integration with off-the-shelf components. The resulting vehicle is then flown in a controlled environment to mimic the mission. A comparison of requirements to actual performance is presented. An assessment is made of the proposed capability and conclusions are drawn about the applicability and scalability of the approach.

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