Aug 2019 | No Comment

Drone Companies snag $7.5 Million Air Force contract to develop UTM

Two New York drone companies have flown into a cloud of sweet, sweet government dollars after receiving a $7.75 million grant from the Air Force Research Lab.

UAS provider AX Enterprize of Yorkville, N.Y. and drone UTM company Thales USA will use the money to investigate stateof- the-art air traffic management (ATM) systems to gauge how civilian and military drone systems can safely coexist alongside manned aviation in the National Airspace System. The project will be completed at the Griffiss UAS Test Site in Rome, N.Y. through a partnership the two companies as well as collaboration with NUAIR, Scherzi Systems LLC and Syracuse University’s Center for Advanced Systems and Engineering (CASE) and Autonomous Systems Policy Institute (ASPI).

Before multiple large or small UAS can fly in the same airspace as other aircraft, procedures need to be developed for drone pilots to safely detect and avoid other air traffic. The project will develop a policy approach and data exchange models – using high-definition air traffic surveillance and ground-based sense-avoid radar technology at Griffiss – to ensure that UAS and manned aircraft can operate within close proximity safely in the National Airspace System (NAS).

VOXL from ModalAI contributes to Uber Eats drone delivery testing

Uber Eats successfully tested its first food delivery by drone recently, in a highdensity urban area with the assistance of technology from San Diego-based startup ModalAI. As the drone carried its edible cargo, VOXL, a powerful yet light-weight computing platform with 4G cellular connectivity, helped keep it safely on the flight path, even when the drone was out of sight from the pilot-in-command.

VOXL is a computing and communication platform that utilizes the smartphone ecosystem to create a highly-integrated, machine vision-based, autonomous navigation system for indoor, outdoor ground robots and drones. Unlike traditional GPS-based flight systems that can experience weak or lost satellite connections, VOXL keeps drones flying even when GPS is not available.

Delair announces subscription program

Delair has announced Delair Takeoff, a cost-effective subscription program for accessing the company’s high performance Delair UX11 family of UAVs and its, cloud-based data management solution. Customers can pay a fixed monthly fee and have unlimited use of the long-range, fully equipped drone. A six-month minimum contract is required, and the plan is currently only available to customers in Europe.

Drone-based aerial biocontrol now offered

UAV-IQ today announced that it is offering aerial biocontrol, a new integrated pest management (IPM) service that uses drones to release beneficial biological control agents bred by Koppert Biological Systems. Drone-based aerial biocontrol offers a new way for conventional and organic growers to combat pests, reduce the environmental impact of pesticide usage, and address a growing labor crunch.

SpotterRF receives patent for the first full dome counter drone radar

SpotterRF has been awarded a patent by the U.S. Patent office for the 3D-500 360° fulldome radar that was developed to detect drone attacks and is the latest in a line of counter-drone radars from SpotterRF. It is the first radar that creates a full-dome drone detection volume from 0 to 90 degrees in the vertical and 360 degrees in the horizontal with single radar that weighs 12 pounds. It measures latitude, longitude, and altitude of all aerial targets in a 1 km wide semi-hemisphere dome, even directly above the radar with no gaps in coverage. Rapid threat assessment is simple with the automatic AI-driven classification and 3D tracking of CUAS combined with fully automated camera queuing on the target. Effective and cost-effective counter-drone systems, are necessary to tackle challenges faced by airports, special events, military, prisons, and critical infrastructure

Indian government brings more provisions to regulate drone operations

Indian Minister of State for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri has admitted in the Upper House of the Indian Parliament that drones can pose a security risk. The government will bring in more provisions to regulate their operation, especially in no-go areas.

Puri added, “The government is acutely conscious of the kind of security threats that drones can pose as they come in all shapes and sizes ranging from 250 grams to 250 kilograms. Therefore, we need to devise an ecosystem in overall system which is well regulated; and some of the steps that we are contemplating and which is work-in- progress is that we are trying to ensure that certain parts of the country are no-go areas or red zones,”

The Minister also emphasised that drones need to be equipped with domestic made technology and those drones that do not have the permission won’t be allowed to take-off

Maharashtra becomes the first state in India to launch drone-based spatial survey

The largest unmanned aerial vehicle (UAVs) survey of properties was launched in the district of Pune last week. This was the largest exercise in the country that used drones to map spatial information to give out property titles to both residential and other properties around 40,000 villages. Drones fitted with high-mounted cameras conducted the in two villages – Pimpri Sandas and Nhavi Sandas in Pune’s Haveli taluka. To cover 25 more villages, authorities are planning to launch the project in Satara (Maan and Khatav talukas), Aurangabad (Aurangabad taluka) and Pune (Purandar taluka).

The 3.73 billion rupee project has been launched by the settlement commissionerate and department of land records, department of rural development and Survey of India (SOI) and for the first time, such a spatial survey is being conducted over 39,000 villages in Maharashtra.

JIW signs agreement with Aerodyne

Japan Infrastructure Waymark Co. Ltd (JIW), a wholly owned subsidiary of Nippon Telegraph and Telephone West (NTT), has signed an agreement with leading UAV service provider Aerodyne to collaborate on drone-based services for infrastructure management, both within Japan and on behalf of overseas Japanese companies. Aerodyne is a world-leading AI-driven drone solutions provider, with a presence in 25 countries around the world and growing.

AirBox drone delivery tests conducted successfully in Antigua

In a partnership with the UN Ops, Antigua Computer Technology (ACT), and the government of Antigua, Drone Delivery Systems successfully performed drone deliveries to a secure smart mailbox, called AirBox Home.

Additionally, Drone Delivery Systems performed a 2.1mile beyond line of sight (BVLOS) flight, delivering one of the most innovative defibrillators in the world made by Heart Hero from Colorado. Co-founder of Drone Delivery Systems, Brandon Pargoe, stated that the “accomplishment of these tests were not planned overnight.” Pargoe shared that the company collaborated not only with the government of Antigua, but also with many other partnering companies and authorities to make these tests a reality.

AirBox Technology is a patented product invented by Mr. Pargoe to provide remote secure delivery access points to anyone in the world.

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