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 receives the award of the I Edition of the HELICE Awards for its leadership in the innovation of the Andalusian aerospace cluster

Our Center has also been awarded the Social Sciences and Environment Academy Award for its contribution to the development of R&D in Andalusia

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CATEC has received the Innovation Development award at the I edition of the HÉLICE Awards, during a ceremony that took place at the end of February and which looks to become an annual reference meeting for the Andalusian aerospace industry to recognize the work of people, companies and entities that contribute to the aerospace sector in the community.

Antonio González Marín, president of the Andalusian Foundation for Aerospace Development (FADA), the managing entity of CATEC, received the prize from the hands of the astronaut Pedro Duque. With this award, the sector has recognized CATEC's European leadership in research areas such as industry 4.0, digital factory, augmented and virtual reality applied to manufacturing processes and unmanned aircraft (RPAS / UAS).

Other companies awarded in the ceremony were Airbus, and Grupo Sevilla Control, and the journalist Mike Richardson. In addition, two well-deserved posthumous tribute were awarded to two important names in the recent history of the Andalusian aerospace sector: Juan Pedro Vela, former director of CATEC, for his work in fostering innovation in the aerospace sector in Andalusia, and Francisco Mencía, former president of HELICE, for his contribution to the construction of the sector, as well as his personal and professional work.

The Regional Minister of Employment, Enterprise and Commerce, Jose Sanchez Maldonado, presided over the award ceremony and stressed during his speech that these awards are an implicit recognition of a sector that is a point of reference for economic development in Andalusia.

Social Sciences Academy Award
Our Center has also recently been awarded the Research, Innovation and Development and Enterprise (R+I+D+E) Award from the Andalusian Social Sciences and Environment Academy. CATEC has been awarded in the category of "Research Center" for its contribution to the development of R&D in the aerospace sector and the transfer of knowledge and technology to companies in this field.

The awards ceremony took place in Seville on March 22, and was presided over by the regional Minister of the Presidency of the Andalusian Government, Manuel Jimenez Barrios; the Regional Minister of Employment, Enterprise and Commerce, Sánchez Maldonado; and the president of the Andalusian Social Sciences and Environment Academy, Antonio Pascual. The president of FADA-CATEC, Antonio Gonzalez Marín; and the Head of the Materials and Processes Division, Fernando Lasagni, received the award. The companies Gonzalez Byass and SAT Royal were also awarded in the categories of "Enterprise" and "Enterprise Initiative", respectively.

In previous editions this award was delivered to entities such as the International Campus of Excellence (ICE) Andalucía Tech, Andalusian Centre for Environmental Studies (CEAMA), the BioTic Granada International Campus of Excellence, and the International Campus of Excellence of the Sea (CEIMAR) of Cádiz.

April 18th 2017
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