The future of drones

The aviation and technology sectors have undergone a revolution with new applications and technologies related to unmanned aerial systems, commonly called drones (UAS / UAV / RPAS). Not only because of the new possibilities of business and commercial activity that have opened in the civil market, both for large companies and for, especially, SMEs traditionally linked to the aeronautical sector, but also for new uses and applications that are already developing for this type of aircraft.

Agriculture, security or industry are just examples of some of the productive sectors of our economy where drone use is already being experienced and applied, but they are not the only ones and there will be many more. In CATEC we have been working since the beginning in research and development to promote the transfer of this technology to companies, as well as with civil and regulatory authorities in a new framework that helps to define and regulate flights and uses with this type of aircraft.

In this issue we talk specifically about two new milestones related to drones in which we have participated successfully and that make us look optimistically at the future of this sector. On the one hand, we have welcomed into our ATLAS Center in Villacarrillo, Jaen the first U-Space demonstration with drones in Spain, held under the DOMUS project, which has been a preliminary test before DOMUS final demonstrations to be held in September to testing a complete integration of drones into the airspace, participating with other aircraft. On the other hand, in recent months we have hosted different tests of the EGNSS4RPAS project for the standardization of unmanned aircraft at European level, which has sought to demonstrate the usefulness of the European positioning systems Galileo and EGNOS for drone operations. These tests have included a recent one carried out in the urban environment of the same town of Villacarrillo, given the proximity to our ATLAS center, and which have been another important milestone as it was the first in all of Europe that has followed the methodology included in the new European regulations of drones, recently approved .

In conclusion, we are in a sector of continuous technological advances that make the future of drones very promising, and that it must be integrated into the new national and Andalusian strategies for the aerospace sector development, although linked also to other sectors-, and articulated as a key element to continue promoting the growth of the productive fabric and the increase of the competitiveness of the industry and the economy in Spain and Andalusia.

Joaquín Rodríguez Grau
Director of CATEC


CATEC collaborates in the FAMACOM project on new automation solutions for light composites manufacturing

The initiative is led by the firm Aerotecnic, and the companies Titania, CT Engineering, the University of Cadiz and AIMPLAS also participate

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CATEC is collaborating with the company Inespasa in the FAMACOM R&D project, a new initiative that aims to develop new automation solutions in advanced manufacturing of composite lightweight structures. Specifically, it intends to develop an integrated solution through microwave curing for manufacturing large sandwich-structured composite parts, reducing the recurring costs of companies and eliminating the autoclave curing system.

FAMACOM is a project that is part of the FEDER INNTERCONECTA 2018 Program, funded by the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI) and the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness. The initiative is led by the Andalusian company Aerotecnic, and also Titania, CT Engineering, the University of Cadiz and the AIMPLAS center are taking part.

FAMACOM will be an important technological leap, since it will allow for even curing of sandwich-structured parts and overcome the difficulties arising from the thickness and non-uniform nature of these assemblies. The result of the project will be a demonstrator for the later stages of the industrialization process consisting of a sandwich panel structure for aircraft. However, its benefits will also be applicable to other high-tech sectors such as the rail, automotive and wind energy industries.

“This project allows us to continue advancing in the development of automation solutions, aiming at low cost and functionality, in this case collaborating with INESPASA,” says our technical director (M&P), Fernando Lasagni. In the picture, our team involved in the project: Fernando Lasagni; Eduardo Ferrera, head of the Automation and Robotics unit; and Elena Blanco, engineer of the Automation and Robotics unit.

August 26th 2019
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