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 participates as an expert in a meeting of the European Defense Agency on drone technologies in the future

The seminar involved both companies related to the field of UAS as institutions and leading European research centers

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CATEC participated on September 12 as an expert in a meeting organized by the European Defense Agency (EDA) to analyze the technologies linked to the sector of unmanned aerial systems (UAS / RPAS, drones) that will have greater impact on the next 20 years in Europe in the field of security and defence.

This meeting was part of the EDA’s strategy to maintain a dialogue with the representatives of the industry and research centers regarding the long-term future prospects in the use of this type of technology. CATEC, as a leading technology center in UAS/RPAS, was selected to participate in this workshop, to which companies, academic institutions and technology centers from all over Europe were invited.

CATEC highlighted, among other aspects, the importance that autonomous and intelligent systems will have on future drones within 20 years, including the use of swarms of small aircraft for security and defence missions, and "detect and avoid" systems.
With its participation in this meeting, CATEC reinforces its position as an international reference in the development of new technologies not only applied to the aeronautical and aerospace sector but also to other sectors such as security and defence, and especially its status as an expert in the area of unmanned aerial systems or drones.

October 9th 2017
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