Showing posts with label Drones. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Drones. Show all posts

08 May, 2024

Airbus finalises acquisition of Aerovel and its UAS Flexrotor

Airbus finalises acquisition of Aerovel and its UAS Flexrotor

Airbus has finalised the acquisition of U.S.-based Aerovel and its unmanned aerial system (UAS), Flexrotor, in a move to strengthen its portfolio of tactical unmanned solutions. Flexrotor is a small tactical unmanned aerial system designed for intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance (ISTAR) missions at sea and over land.

"We see more and more armed forces and parapublic agencies around the world looking to investigate how unmanned aerial systems can strengthen their intelligence and surveillance capabilities. The Flexrotor, as a vertical takeoff and landing UAS, fits into our strategy to expand our UAS offerings. Together with the VSR700, we will continue to develop manned-unmanned teaming to offer our customers the enhanced and expanded mission capabilities that they require to monitor and safeguard their communities and critical infrastructure, while preserving essential assets such as helicopters,” said Mathilde Royer, Head of Strategy and Sustainability at Airbus Helicopters.

26 April, 2024

Robinson Helicopter Company acquires Ascent AeroSystems

Robinson Helicopter Company (RHC), a global leader in civilian rotorcraft, has acquired Ascent AeroSystems, now a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Robinson Helicopter Company. This acquisition reinforces Robinson’s dedication to scaling innovation, accelerating new rotorcraft developments, and supporting diverse missions worldwide. By leveraging the expertise and resources of both companies, Robinson reinforces its leadership in the future of vertical flight systems and utility missions.

Ascent AeroSystems Uncrewed Aerial Systems (UAS) to be Assembled at Robinson Helicopter’s Vertically Integrated Manufacturing Facility in Torrance.




Ascent AeroSystems, recognized for its efficient and compact coaxial helicopter drones designed for industrial, public safety, and defense applications, brings a wealth of technological synergies that align with Robinson's strategic vision for growth and expansion into new markets. Through the acquisition, Ascent can now grow and scale by building its UAVs at Robinson’s cost-effective, vertically integrated manufacturing facility in Torrance, CA.

Ascent AeroSystems' expertise in autonomous electric flight technology and modular design philosophy will enhance Robinson's offerings. The integration of emerging technologies and a diverse ecosystem of payloads, power sources, and launch methods will further enhance the company's mission-focused offerings, including crewed-uncrewed teaming and interoperability across product families.

"This strategic acquisition is in line with our vision to broaden our offerings and meet increasing global demand for enhanced mission capabilities in law enforcement, public safety, firefighting, utility, and defense,” said David Smith, president and CEO of Robinson Helicopter Company. “Ascent's advanced technologies and versatile designs complement our ability to be the preeminent choice in global rotorcraft."

25 March, 2024

DoorDash and Wing Announce Drone Delivery Pilot in the US


Expanded partnership brings speed and convenience of drone delivery to consumers beginning in Christiansburg, Virginia


DoorDash and Wing have announced the launch of their drone delivery partnership in the U.S., starting in Christiansburg, VA. Select local consumers will be able to order eligible menu items from Wendy’s® — the pilot’s first restaurant partner — through the DoorDash marketplace and have them delivered via drone. This follows the drone delivery pilot program that DoorDash and Wing launched in Australia in 2022 and has since expanded to three locations in Queensland with over 60 participating merchants, marking the first time that Wing integrated its drone delivery service within another marketplace.

“We are excited to expand our partnership with Wing in the U.S. to integrate drone delivery into DoorDash’s ecosystem,” said Harrison Shih, Senior Director of DoorDash Labs. “At DoorDash, we are committed to advancing last-mile logistics by building a multi-modal delivery platform that serves all sides of our marketplace. We’re optimistic about the value drone delivery will bring to our platform as we work to offer more efficient, sustainable, and convenient delivery options for consumers.”

“Expanding our partnership with DoorDash and launching in the U.S. is a direct result of the success we’ve seen from our initial collaboration in Australia, where Wing has served tens of thousands of customers via the DoorDash app for over a year now,” said Cosimo Leipold, Head of Partnerships, at Wing. “Wing has now made over 350,000 deliveries across three countries and looking ahead we are focused on providing a fast, affordable and safe service to our partners so they can better serve their customers. This moment continues our meaningful expansion of this service in the U.S. and advances our shared goal to better the last-mile delivery ecosystem.”

16 February, 2024

UK to supply thousands of drones as co-leader of major international capability coalition for Ukraine

The UK and Latvia will jointly lead a capability coalition, which will see thousands of drones supplied to Ukraine, including first-person view (FPV) drones, which have proven highly effective on the battlefield.

Ukraine will receive thousands more drones as Defence Secretary Grant Shapps announced yesterday. that the UK will co-lead a major drone capability coalition with Latvia for Ukraine.

As part of the coalition, the UK will scale up and streamline the West’s provision of “first person view” (FPV) drones to Ukraine. FPV drones have proven highly effective on the battlefield since Russia’s full-scale invasion, providing their operators with situational awareness to target enemy positions, armoured vehicles, and ships with explosive ordnance.

By creating a competition to produce these drones at scale and at an affordable price point, the UK will leverage the strength of Western industry. This is the first project to be launched from the £200 million drone package announced by the Prime Minister in January this year. It will see the UK order thousands of FPV drones for Ukraine, including from UK manufacturers, providing a boost to the industry and delivering on the Prime Minister’s priority to grow the economy.

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps said: "The UK continues to do all we can to give Ukraine what it needs – upping our aid to £2.5bn this year and committing £200m to manufacture drones, making us Ukraine’s largest drone supplier.

Today, we’re going even further. I’m proud to announce that the UK and Latvia will co-lead an international coalition to build Ukraine’s vital drone capabilities. Together, we will give Ukraine the capabilities it needs to defend itself and win this war, to ensure that Putin fails in his illegal and barbaric ambitions."

The Defence Secretary also met his NATO counterparts on Thursday to review progress on support for Ukraine, NATO’s new warfighting plans, ramping up defence production capacity and preparations for the NATO Summit in Washington in July, where leaders will mark the Alliance’s 75th anniversary.

The UK continues to play a leading role in NATO, contributing to all operations and missions, committing almost all our Armed Forces under the NATO Force Model, and offering a full spectrum of capabilities.

05 February, 2024

BAE Systems takes over Malloy Aeronautics



BAE Systems confirmed at the end of last week it had acquired Malloy Aeronautics – a leading company in innovative heavy-lift drone and aeronautical technologies. 

Malloy Aeronautics designs and supplies all-electric uncrewed aerial systems (UAS) to both civil and military customers. Its range of uncrewed, heavy-lift quadcopters are capable of lifting payloads from 68kg to 300kg over short to medium-range missions.

These platforms offer interchangeable capabilities and greater flexibility at a fraction of the cost and time of more traditional methods, whilst minimising risk to more expensive assets and human life.

Malloy’s approximately 80 strong workforce will continue to operate from its site in Berkshire, supporting its existing customers. BAE Systems and Malloy, who have been working together in advancing cutting-edge UAS solutions since 2021, will further develop Malloy’s existing portfolio and accelerate new and novel technologies to customers worldwide.

Simon Barnes, Group Managing Director of BAE Systems’ Air sector, said: “Our acquisition of Malloy Aeronautics is part of our ongoing strategy to develop and invest in breakthrough technologies which augment our existing capabilities and provide our customers with the innovation they need in response to evolving requirements. We’re confident that the synergy between our two companies will pave the way for even greater achievements in uncrewed aerial systems and technologies.”

Oriol Badia, Chief Operating Officer of Malloy Aeronautics, said: “We’ve come a long way over the last ten years, turning our vision of sustainable electric heavy lift technology into reality, thanks to the dedication and efforts of our team. This new step in our journey with BAE Systems will allow us to combine the strengths and vision of a young company with the reach and support of an experienced one, ultimately giving our customers the ability to scale their demands and allow us to deliver innovative new products – including the T-650 – at pace.”


14 December, 2023

Matternet gets authorization from the German Aviation Office for BVLOS drone delivery operations in Berlin

Matternet, the developer of the leading urban drone delivery platform, has announced that it has received approval from the Luftfahrt-Bundesamt (LBA), Germany’s Federal Aviation Office, to operate the Matternet M2 drone delivery platform beyond the visual line of sight (BVLOS) in the heart of Berlin. This marks the beginning of Berlin’s first-ever BVLOS drone delivery network.

Labor Berlin, Europe’s largest hospital laboratory, provides diagnostics for 30 hospitals with more than 24,000 beds, including Charité, the largest university hospital in Europe and Vivantes, the largest municipal hospital group in Berlin. Labor Berlin handles more than 6 million lab samples per year from satellite laboratories across Berlin in its central lab. The drone delivery network aims to connect Labor Berlin’s central lab to affiliated hospitals for ultra-fast delivery of critical samples in the densely populated city. When fully operational, the network will serve millions of patients a year. Operations will formally begin early next year following clearance on a federal state level.

“Healthcare systems need a fast, reliable and cost-effective solution to transport lab samples and pharmacy items to ensure patients receive best-in-class care,” said Andreas Raptopoulos, Founder and CEO of Matternet. “We are extremely excited to partner with Labor Berlin, Europe’s largest hospital laboratory, to create the first city-wide healthcare network in the capital of Germany and bring the benefits of drone delivery to the citizens of Berlin.”

The drone delivery network will target emergency diagnostics and will increase operational efficiency as well as cut down on carbon emissions from the nearly 250,000 miles per day that cars travel within the city.

06 December, 2023

Flight trials integrate uncrewed aircraft into controlled airspace

A partnership of aviation leaders come together to demonstrate that uncrewed aircraft can be safely integrated into controlled airspace among piloted aircraft through multiple test flights.



A partnership of aviation leaders has successfully completed a first-of-its-kind trial, including a series of test flights aimed at evaluating the operational integration of uncrewed aircraft flying beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) into controlled airspace. The successful completion of these trial test flights in New Zealand demonstrates that safe, uncrewed flight operations are possible, today, in controlled airspace among other piloted aircraft.

Through this trial program, the partnership has established a safe process for uncrewed aircraft to access controlled airspace and created a significant new understanding and capability for commercial autonomous flight operations. The trials offer key insights for regulators and industry players globally to facilitate further testing and inform rule-making.




Led by Wisk Aero, the trials included the New Zealand Government and industry partners, including Insitu Pacific as the approved Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) operator, the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand (CAA) as the regulatory observer and Part 102 approver, Airways New Zealand as the air navigation service provider alongside Airways International’s uncrewed traffic management (UTM) system AirShare, and indigenous-led aerospace venture, Tāwhaki, providing the flight testing site.

The latest test flights were part of Wisk’s multi-phased testing programme under the New Zealand Government’s Airspace Integration Trial Programme (AITP). This latest phase of testing involved multiple flights that took place between November 17 and December 1, 2023, which demonstrated that a RPA can be operated under instrument flight rules (IFR) in controlled airspace and integrated with regular crewed traffic. The flights took place at the Tāwhaki National Aerospace Centre at Kaitorete, involving take-offs, landings, and uncontrolled and controlled airspace navigation.

“The successful completion of this phase of testing demonstrates that it is possible to safely integrate autonomous aircraft into controlled airspace that is shared with piloted aircraft,” said Catherine MacGowan, Wisk’s Vice President of APAC and Air Operations. “The processes, data, and learnings from these trial flights will help shape the future of Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) and the broader aviation industry.”

13 October, 2023

BT connects the skies with UK’s first Drone SIM

BT releases SIM to connect Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)  


 
The week BT announced the launch of the UK’s first Drone SIM to unlock the true potential of beyond visual line of sight (BVLOs) drone operation across the UK.   

Designed to function at altitude using the EE network, Drone SIM offers unlimited data plans and continuous connectivity in the sky. Drone SIM is built to endure vibration, temperature and humidity extremes, supporting all-season drone use. BT business customers will be the first to benefit from the Drone SIM which has the potential to transform industries, from urgent delivery of medical supplies to infrastructure monitoring and transportation of goods. 

Using BT Group’s EE network, Drone SIM benefits from high priority and ultra-responsive connectivity, enabling safety, control, telemetry and realising ultra-high definition (UHD) video streaming at altitude. This enables drone users to capture detailed, survey-quality imagery and video for a wide range of purposes, from search and rescue to infrastructure inspection. 

Drone SIM is pushing the limits of drone flight. With the largest geographic coverage in the UK, uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAVs) can now fly significant distances at their full capability whilst remaining in constant communication with their remote pilots and safety systems; a dramatic shift from a world where they were limited by line-of-sight radio transmission or local Wi-Fi. This innovation presents a key opportunity across industry, from urgent delivery of medical supplies to infrastructure monitoring and transportation of goods.  

22 September, 2023

Rain announces $9.7M in financing to enable rapid wildfire response with prepositioned autonomous aircraft

Rain, a leader in aerial wildfire containment technology, announced an oversubscribed seed round, closing $9.7 million in financing earlier this year to provide fire agencies the ability to contain wildfires before they grow out of control with prepositioned autonomous aircraft. DBL Partners led the round, with participation from VoLo Earth Ventures, Kapor Capital, and Convective Capital. Other investors include Immad Akhund, Brian Bjelde, Steve Blank, John and Patrick Collison, Edward Fenster, Dylan Field, Nat Friedman, Daniel Gross, Geoff Ralston, and Blake Scholl. The funding will be used to advance pilot projects in the United States.

Founded in 2019, Rain draws on fire agency insights and personal experience with extreme wildfire to create the first autonomous rapid wildfire suppression system, addressing the urgent need to scale, expedite and modernize response to the growing number of wildfires.

Rain adapts autonomous aircraft with a wildfire intelligence system to rapidly perceive, understand and suppress early-stage wildfire ignitions, capabilities not yet seen in wildfire technology. This technology enables the prepositioning of firefighting aircraft in high wildfire risk areas and works with existing wildfire detection systems that remotely dispatch Rain-equipped aircraft as soon as ignition is detected, deploying the aircraft within seconds and reaching a nascent fire within minutes. New research shows that a 15 minute improvement to wildfire response time could generate an economic benefit of $3.5-8.2 billion dollars in California alone. In the U.S. total annualized costs associated with wildfire average $348 billion per year. With extreme wildfires estimated to rise 14% by 2030, the collective problem is only getting worse.

01 June, 2023

Ameriflight gets exemption to operate drones

Ameriflight Receives FAA Approval to Operate Matternet M2 Drone, Offering Solution for Unmanned, On-Demand Small Package Delivery


Ameriflight has received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to operate drone aircraft, making Ameriflight the first existing Part 135 Cargo airline in the U.S. to receive such exemption. 

The newly granted exemption allows Ameriflight to conduct UAS operations and approval to add the Matternet M2 to its fleet, enabling the launch of the first fully operational, large-scale drone operation in the United States.

Through its partnership with Matternet, the developer of the world’s leading urban drone delivery system, Ameriflight intends to operate the Matternet M2 drone for commercial delivery, focusing on health care and e-commerce deliveries to customers located in dense urban and suburban environments across the country. 

Ameriflight will deploy the M2 fleet of drones using Matternet's software platform from a central remote Network Operations Center, allowing the company to safely expand its network, while maintaining the highest level of pilot operator supervision and flexibility. Ameriflight intends to operate its uncrewed aircraft as a supplement to its crewed operations, not replacing the current flying operation, aircraft, or pilots.

“Adding this state-of-the-art, environmentally friendly aircraft and launching our UAS division allows us to expand our service offerings to off-airport alternative sites for time-sensitive small package needs,” said Ameriflight President and CEO Alan Rusinowitz. “Matternet’s technology is at the forefront of autonomous innovation and provides a revolutionary solution for customers. We’re looking forward to launching our first M2 flights very soon, and, as we move forward into future flight, developing additional areas of drone delivery.”

27 May, 2023

Dronamics cargo drone completes first flight.....future of deliveries one step closer


Dronamics, the world's first cargo drone airline has confirmed the successful completion of the first flight of its flagship aircraft, the Black Swan, at Balchik Airport in Bulgaria. This success demonstrates the potential for the logistics industry to enhance efficiency in the transportation of products. 

Born out of two brothers' desire to find a quicker, greener and more affordable way to deliver goods, Dronamics is on a mission to enable same-day delivery for everyone, everywhere. This significant milestone is the culmination of months of ground testing and subscale flights. The Black Swan aircraft was remotely piloted by two commercial airline pilots from the Dronamics ground control station.

The successful flight test validates the company's licensed cargo drone technology for commercial flights in Europe, set to begin later this year, serving a variety of industries, with a fast and cost-effective solution to meet evolving consumer needs.

"Since the day we first imagined what the Black Swan aircraft could look like, we've worked towards this flight. Today we've made history and are proud to have demonstrated the validity of our drone technology," said Konstantin Rangelov, Co-Founder and CTO of Dronamics.

"It's taken an enormous amount of hard work, belief and drive to prove that what we envisioned works. We can now focus on the next step, the roll-out of our commercial operations, and we couldn't be more excited," said Svilen Rangelov, Co-Founder and CEO of Dronamics.

21 April, 2023

New cargo eVTOL programme launched by former F1 technical director

Specialist consultancy company MGI Engineering has launched its cargo UAV technology demonstrator programme. MGI CEO and Founder Mike Gascoyne officially unveiled its fully functional technology demonstrator at the eVTOL Insights’ London Conference on Wednesday 19 April 2023.

This announcement will thrust the well-established specialist engineering consultancy firm into the newly-emerging cargo eVTOL industry and promises to bring a fresh viewpoint on how to develop the latest aerospace technology for these novel vehicles. MGI is applying Formula 1 development philosophies and mindset to the cargo eVTOL UAV market. Lightweight composite structures with a highly-efficient, fast-paced iterative design processes are key elements of the company’s approach to tackling the challenges that the cargo eVTOL industry presents and it aims to provide these consultancy services throughout the cargo eVTOL industry. MGI Engineering’s prowess stems from its decades of experience at the pinnacle of motorsport, F1 - a tenure that is reflected through its senior staff and its CEO, Mike Gascoyne - who has previously worked at McLaren, Tyrrell, Sauber, Renault, Toyota before setting up the Lotus F1 Team through MGI in 2009.

MGI Engineering was founded by Mike Gascoyne in 2003. Mike has worked in Senior Management and as a Technical Director level in Formula 1 for over 25 years. The company leverages its extensive and unrivalled experience of utilising cutting-edge technologies to offer complete engineering and project management solutions - in incumbent and newly emerging industries such as cargo eVTOL to maximise sustainability and future-proof viability with a mission-led engineering approach.

19 April, 2023

Former F1 Technical Director launches cargo eVTOL programme

Specialist consultancy company MGI Engineering has launched its cargo UAV technology demonstrator programme. MGI CEO and Founder Mike Gascoyne officially unveiled its fully functional technology demonstrator at the eVTOL Insights’ London Conference on Wednesday 19 April 2023.

This announcement will thrust the well-established specialist engineering consultancy firm into the newly-emerging cargo eVTOL industry and promises to bring a fresh viewpoint on how to develop the latest aerospace technology for these novel vehicles. MGI is applying Formula 1 development philosophies and mindset to the cargo eVTOL UAV market. Lightweight composite structures with a highly-efficient, fast-paced iterative design processes are key elements of the company’s approach to tackling the challenges that the cargo eVTOL industry presents and it aims to provide these consultancy services throughout the cargo eVTOL industry. MGI Engineering’s prowess stems from its decades of experience at the pinnacle of motorsport, F1 - a tenure that is reflected through its senior staff and its CEO, Mike Gascoyne - who has previously worked at McLaren, Tyrrell, Sauber, Renault, Toyota before setting up the Lotus F1 Team through MGI in 2009.

MGI Engineering was founded by Mike Gascoyne in 2003. Mike has worked in Senior Management and as a Technical Director level in Formula 1 for over 25 years. The company leverages its extensive and unrivalled experience of utilising cutting-edge technologies to offer complete engineering and project management solutions - in incumbent and newly emerging industries such as cargo eVTOL to maximise sustainability and future-proof viability with a mission-led engineering approach.

18 January, 2023

Global Search & Rescue Drone Market Estimated To Exceed 3.25 Billion By The End Of 2023



Photo by Emiliano Arano
The deployment of drones has increased in recent years for a variety of purposes. Drones offer unique capabilities used by emergency responders around the world. They can be used on land and at sea or at night or in low visibility. They are saving many lives by participating in various general emergency and security operations and their use in search and rescue operations has proven to be one of the most potentially life-saving applications. Equipped with sensors and powerful cameras, drones can cover a large area in a short time. 

Search and rescue drones can also be equipped with special equipment such as infrared cameras and speakers. This allows user to locate missing persons and save lives. Helicopters and manned aircraft cost hundreds of dollars an hour to operate during rescue operations. Drones, only require an initial investment and have a low maintenance cost. The drone takes off from a safe location and scans from a high altitude. This leads to the safety of the team the as they stay back on the ground and get an idea of the rescue operation.  

report from Fact.MR projected that the search and rescue drone market is estimated to reach valuation of US$ 3,254.4 Million in 2023 and will top US$ 11,648.1 Million by 2033, growing with a CAGR of around 13.6% from 2023-2033.  The report said: "Search and rescue drones are now becoming a popular product for responders conducting any type of emergency response. These drones are designed to provide aerial support to ground teams in searching for the locations of missing and injured people.  The team can rely on UAVs for search and rescue missions while other team members continue conventional search techniques or provide support elsewhere. Equipped with the right sensors and cameras, the drone can cover large areas quickly and efficiently, making it ideal for search missions."  Active companies in the markets this week include: Draganfly Inc. (NASDAQ: DPRO) (CSE: DPRO), Deutsche Lufthansa AG (OTCQX: DLAKY), Joby Aviation, Inc. (NYSE: JOBY), The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA), Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ: KTOS).

Fact.MR continued: "Drones can now fly farther and higher owing to developments in sensor technology, giving them a clearer view of hard-to-reach places. They will also have stronger cameras and other sensors, enabling them to gather more comprehensive data about possible victims and dangers.  Fact.MR anticipates that search and rescue teams will depend more and more on these adaptable and life-saving devices as drone technology advances. Manufacturers will also shift towards these innovations for generating higher profits… (Drones are) a safe, efficient, and cost-effective product to drive market growth for search and rescue drone."

Draganfly Inc. (NASDAQ: DPRO) (CSE: DPRO) BREAKING NEWS:  Draganfly Selected by Lufthansa Industry Solutions to Strengthen Marine Search and Rescue Infrastructure - Draganfly Inc. (FSE: 3U8) ("Draganfly" or the "Company"), an award-winning, industry-leading drone solutions and systems developer, is pleased to announce that Lufthansa Industry Solutions, an IT service provider and a subsidiary of Lufthansa Group has entered into a letter of intent with Draganfly to explore providing its drone solutions and Vital Intelligence (VI) technology for use into its existing infrastructure and customer solutions.

Draganfly's technology will assist in Lufthansa Industry Solutions' objective of providing the maritime industry with the highest information technology and performance monitoring standard. Draganfly's drone solutions will be integrated for deployment during marine search and rescue operations and for reconnaissance purposes, adding another layer of safety and security for crew members and passengers.

Draganfly's search and rescue drone can be utilized when a passenger aboard a vessel falls into the ocean. These specialized drones are high-endurance, multirotor UAVs capable of utilizing Draganfly's optical and infrared imaging solutions during an active emergency. The company's drone can be used to thoroughly map certain areas, locate survivors, and begin measuring core vitals.

The reconnaissance drones provided by Draganfly can carry out inspections of cargo and potential hazards on the water. This UAV is a high-endurance, drone that utilizes optical and imaging solutions.   These drones can even function in hazardous areas.

Lufthansa Industry Solutions plans to integrate Draganfly's Vital Intelligence technology into its Artificial Intelligence as a Service (AIaaS) platform, a package that offers a quick and easy solution for businesses trying to achieve digital transformation. Draganfly's Vital Intelligence (VI) is software that uses video feed from simple RGB cameras to measure biometric data and share human experience and health insights.

"We are thrilled to partner with Lufthansa Industry Solutions and provide our versatile AI technology for use in their current infrastructure," said Cameron Chell, President and CEO of Draganfly. "This partnership reflects the growing demand for our drone, AI and data solutions with Tier 1 customers."

10 January, 2023

BT Group’s incubation hub Etc. backs Altitude Angel to make the UK a global leader for commercial automated drone operations

Etc., the incubation team in BT Group’s Digital unit boosting the businesses of the future, today announces that it has entered into a £5 million deal with Altitude Angel, a leading UTM (Unified Traffic Management) technology provider, as the two businesses scale the UK drone industry and support the development of the UK’s drone superhighway, set to be the largest and longest network of its kind in the world.

UTM is the software platform and infrastructure needed to allow drones to fly safely, without a pilot, over large distances. The £5 million deal will accelerate Altitude Angel’s roll-out of its transformative ARROW technology, which detects and identifies drones, while also enabling drones to share the airspace with crewed aviation safely and securely. 

The deal is a critical stepping stone in enabling Altitude Angel to scale its technology to allow long distance drone flights, supporting the potential for faster delivery of essential and non-essential items and unlocking an industry estimated to be worth £45bn by 2030*. The deal is crucial to drone innovation, supporting commercial and retail use cases, but also enabling drones to transform how essential services function – from supporting the emergency services with real-time search and rescue, fast transportation of medical supplies, farming analysis, and architectural planning. 

13 December, 2022

Matternet launches World’s longest urban drone delivery route

New test route will showcase the potential for more efficient patient care through the on-demand delivery of diagnostic samples and will serve as a template for expansion networks in Europe, the U.S., and beyond.


                               Matternet, the developer of the world’s leading drone delivery system, announced it has begun test operations on a five-kilometer BVLOS (beyond-visual-line-of-sight) route over the city of Zurich, Switzerland. This route is the world’s longest drone delivery route over a major city and will be used to transport diagnostic samples between the Triemli and Waid Hospitals – both a part of Stadspital Zürich, a municipal central hospital owned by the city of Zurich.

“Launching this new service for Stadspital Zürich is an important moment for Matternet, but also for the future of both health care and logistics services,” said Andreas Raptopoulos, founder and CEO of Matternet. “Leveraging the longest urban BVLOS route to transport biological samples for diagnostic testing on-demand changes the way that hospitals and hospital systems can approach patient care, all while creating new efficiencies that can improve patient experiences and ensure that they keep pace with the demands of the 21st century.”

Using Matternet’s unmanned aircraft, transportation between the two hospitals and their laboratories takes just seven minutes. This test is demonstrating the potential for drones to provide fast, on-demand delivery for individual urgent shipments, without congesting Zurich roads or emitting CO2. Matternet drones to transport medical items with secure end-to-end chain of custody and operate autonomously with remote supervision through Matternet’s Mission Control centre in Zurich.

12 December, 2022

Remote Carrier demonstrator released and operated from flying A400M for the first time

Remote Carrier demonstrator released and operated from flying A400M for the first time

Germany’s Bundeswehr, Airbus, the German Aerospace Center DLR, and German companies SFL and Geradts have jointly carried out the world’s first successful launch and operation of a Remote Carrier flight test demonstrator from a flying A400M. Multiplying the force and extending the range of unmanned systems will be one of the future roles of Airbus’ military transport aircraft in the Future Combat Air System (FCAS).

“The excellent collaboration with our German customer and partners on the A400M UAV Launcher campaign is further evidence of how the development of FCAS will take innovation and technologies to the next level,” said Airbus Defence and Space CEO Michael Schoellhorn. “FCAS as a system of systems is starting to take shape now.” The device for launching Remote Carriers from a flying A400M was developed in just six months. For the test flight, it was loaded onto the ramp of a Bundeswehr A400M, from which the Remote Carrier demonstrator, a modified Airbus Do-DT25 drone, was launched. After the release, the Do-DT25’s engines were started and it continued in powered flight mode. The crew on board the A400M then handed over control to an operator on the ground, who safely commanded and landed the drone.
 
Remote Carriers will be an important component of FCAS. They will fly in close cooperation with manned aircraft and support pilots in their tasks and missions. Military transport aircraft such as the A400M will play an important role: as motherships, they will bring the Remote Carriers as close as possible to their areas of operation before releasing up to 50 small or up to 12 heavy Remote Carriers. These will then join manned aircraft, operating with a high degree of automation although always under a pilot’s control.
 

Getting the A400M UAV Launcher ready for testing

To get the A400M UAV Launcher ready for the test campaign, Airbus, the Bundeswehr Technical Centre for Aircraft and Aeronautical Equipment (WTD 61), DLR, SFL and Geradts applied new ways of working such as rapid prototyping and a joint flight testing approach. This enabled the multidisciplinary team to develop and integrate the system, bringing it into the needed systems-of-systems context in a very short time, ready for flight testing. Throughout the development, this flexible industrial setup and new collaborative ways of working were supported by the German procurement office, BAAINBw.







10 December, 2022

Airbus-led large-scale flight demo teams up fighters, a helicopter and drones

Airbus-led large-scale flight demo teams up fighters, a helicopter and drones



In Europe’s first large-scale multi-domain flight demo led by Airbus, two fighter jets, one helicopter and five unmanned remote carriers teamed up and accomplished a mission that could occur in real-life situations. The Future Combat Air System (FCAS) Manned-Unmanned Teaming Demonstrator project will now move to the next phase: further paving the way for FCAS by developing a flying remote carrier (RC)  demonstrator in the coming years.
 
“With the Multi-Domain Flight Demo, or MDFD, we demonstrated for the first time in Europe how manned-unmanned teaming capabilities and functionalities with up to ten connected assets work in a real-life inspired scenario and under near operational conditions,” said Jean-Brice Dumont, Head of Military Air Systems at Airbus. "This is yet another example of how we push boundaries and pioneer technologies so that our customers can fulfill their missions: saving lives and ensuring a better future for us all.”

In the demo conducted in late summer 2022, the fighter jets, helicopter and unmanned remote carriers were connected via a meshed compact airborne networking data link (CANDL) that allowed them to seamlessly interact above Rovajärvi, Finland - and help to rid the world of a fictional rogue warlord.

19 October, 2022

Airbus’ multi-mission “cargo copter” is put to the test during a robotic military exercise

Photo Airbus
Photo Airbus
A sub-scale demonstrator of a future Airbus multi-mission unmanned aerial vehicle demonstrated its capabilities during a large robotic exercise organised last month by the Portuguese Navy and NATO, which brought together military forces, universities and selected industry partners.

By taking part in this exercise, the “cargo copter” operated in a dense robotic environment, validating the concept’s usefulness – particularly its modular design for easy, flexible and rapid swap-out of payloads and batteries.

 

          “This was a great opportunity to trial our small-scale
           demonstrator in realistic conditions”

                                                                                     Jens Federhen, X-Works, Airbus Innovation 

 

The demonstrator was developed by Airbus’ UAS New Programmes group in collaboration with the company’s X-Works rapid prototyping team. A system-of-systems approach was applied with the goal of meeting military mission requirements that range from cargo transportation and ISR duties (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance) to serving as a communications relay and a combat force multiplier.

cargo copter
Photo  Airbus

Its validation occurred in highly realistic operational conditions during the REP(MUS)2022 military exercise, which was conducted in Portugal’s Troia Peninsula region from 12-23 September. Overall, REP(MUS)2022 brought together some 1,500 personnel to test the coordination of unmanned systems and experimental mission scenarios above the water, on the water and under the sea.

 

13 September, 2022

Duxion signs $500 Million Memorandum of Understanding for eJet motor Order

Image Duxion / Dymond

Duxion Motors Inc. has announced that it has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) with Dymond Aerospace Inc. to supply 200 patented eJet motors™ for use in Dymond’s new fleet of 100 unmanned cargo aircraft.

Under the terms of the MOU, Duxion will supply 20 eJet motors™ per year for ten years starting in 2026 for a total purchase of CAD$500 million. Each eJet motor™ will be built using Duxion’s patented technology incorporating a rim-driven motor which utilizes permanent magnet technology in a novel manner to deliver a world class thrust to weight ratio. The eJet motors™ for this application will be capable of producing 8,000+ lbs of thrust, similar to the thrust produced by the engines of 50-passenger CRJ100 aircraft. Each of Dymond’s aircraft will be outfitted with two Duxion eJet motors™, powered by hydrogen fuel cells.

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