We live in a four-dimensional universe of space and time, continuously seeking “high ground” for the otherwise unobtainable clarity that comes with seeing from above. Mobility enabled by flight extends spatial reach and provides temporal presence—to be at the right place at the right time—for critical applications that might include emergency response, a photographic record of receding glaciers or expanding deserts, or delivering a package to your door. RECUV is helping lead the new Integrated Remote and In Situ Sensing (IRISS) initiative as part of the University of Colorado's Our Space. Our Future grand challenge activity. IRISS will transform data-collection technologies and strategies, to see the world in 4D through a ground-to-space sensing column with unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) operating in the atmosphere, integrated with ground-based and spaced-based observation systems to enable capabilities ranging from improved climate and weather forecasting, to better-informed government policy making, to real-time decisions for products and services deliveries, and to address the multitude of emerging research and education challenges to prepare the workforce of the 21st -Century.
IRISS is a multi-disciplinary team that will lead the design, development, and deployment of novel remote and in-situ sensing systems to exploit mobility enabled by aerospace systems to enhance data collection from the ground, in the atmosphere, and from space. With its partners, IRISS will explore commercial opportunities and will lead discussions on the ethical, legal, and social policy implications of new technologies and big-data collection for the emerging Grand Challenges of the 21st Century.