HEDGE Hypersonic ReEntry Deployable Glider Experiment; Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Commercial use: Ethical Impacts on Privacy

Castro, Samantha, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Goyne, Chris, EN-Mech/Aero Engr Dept, University of Virginia
Rogers, Hannah, EN-Engineering and Society, University of Virginia

The technical report within this portfolio consists of a detailed proposal to the Department of Defense or the National Aeronautics and Space Administration for support of a hypersonic reentry deployable glider CubeSat experiment. The project began during the scholastic year 2021-2022 with a team of fifteen, each divided into six sub system component groups and will be completed in the year 2025 with deployment. This scholastic year began the design process of the hypersonic deployable glider CubeSat concluding with a conceptual design review. Within this proposal the team has finalized key mission details through the guidelines of the Space Mission Engineering process. This includes outlining the Project Overview, Mission Statement, Mission Objectives, Mission Architecture, and Mission Concept. Furthermore, the team was able to finalize subsystem requirements, constraints, and component selections. This proposal will also include details concerning any Federal licensing requirements as well as scheduling and budgeting. Through the first phase of this experiment the team was able to gain an understanding of how to apply the Space Mission Engineering process to a university level application as well as an understanding of common spacecraft subsystems functionalities. As a high functioning performing team, much was able to be accomplished for the project during this scholastic year.

The STS research paper within this portfolio consists of an ethical analysis regarding the concerns of privacy loss with the commercialization of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) through the Science, Technology, and Society framework, Social Construct of Technology (SCOT). Recommendations to certain changes within society and regulations were provided as possible answers to the challenges concerning privacy loss to businesses using UAVs, these challenges being power dynamics, over collection of information, and dangers of the lack of knowledge of what happens to this information. Through this STS research paper a further understanding of society’s relationship with technology was gained as well as some of the challenges presented by technology and sociological reasoning for them. This analysis allowed for understanding of the importance in recognizing different group perspectives on a technological artifact and how design and use interpretations can lead to disagreement of issues concerning those of the related groups. With this, many examples were seen with how businesses’ can interpret the use of commercial UAVs at the expense of an individual's privacy.

Analysis of the ethics and regulation involved in the commercial use of UAVs under the Science & Technology in Society framework SCOT is valuable to individuals because of the importance of understanding the concept of human drive in technology as well as promote reflection on human rights being compromised for technological innovation. Understanding the ethics and societal impacts of technology through the SCOT framework can also help with analyzing the effects of using a CubeSat for a hypersonic glider experiment and how different groups may perceive this space technology. It is important to recognize the social implications of aeronautical and aerospace technologies and the ethical issues common within the industry concerning human drive in technology as well as differing interpretations among relative groups concerning the industry’s technology.

BS (Bachelor of Science)
CubeSat, Hypersonic, UAVs, SCOT, Privacy

School of Engineering and Applied Science
Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering
Technical Advisor: Chris Goyne
STS Advisor: Hannah Rogers
Technical Team Members: Brendan Angelotti, Margaret Che, Jonathan Cummins, Desmond DeVille, Michael Fogarty, Jashianette Fournier Jaiman, Ryan Jansen, Emma Jensen, James Parker Johnson, Nicholas Lu, Adam Obedin, Eva Paleo, Cristina Rodriguez, Josh Willoughby

All rights reserved (no additional license for public reuse)
Issued Date: