Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Robert M. Eninger, PhD.


Small unmanned aircraft systems can be used for a variety of environmental applications. SUAS under 50 kg have the most utility at the tactical level and benefit from the research and development of systems currently being manufactured. Integrating chemical sensors into these systems can enhance Multi-service Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Reconnaissance and Surveillance. Considering the advantages and disadvantages in the fundamental science of twelve detection technologies, four types of sensors emerged as candidates for SUAS integration. Using specifications from commercial-off-the-shelf sensors, these four detection technologies (Electrochemical, Metal Oxide Semiconductor, Photoionization, and Catalytic Bead) were further evaluated on five parameters (response time, sensitivity, selectivity, power, and weight). Based on this research, MOS detectors are the top detection technology for SUAS employment and integration. In addition to classic chemical warfare agents, toxic industrial chemicals pose a risk to both civilian and military personnel. Eighty-five hazardous chemicals were identified by cross-referencing chemicals detectable using these four technologies with CWA and TIC of interest based on their toxicity and or security issue. Finally, a multi-objective decision model provides a basic decision aid for employing SUAS as a CBRN R and S asset in a tactical environment.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number