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


Consulting and technology partnerships with companies to encourage industry participation in R&D

CATEC offers this service to support aerospace companies in the implementation of projects that will enhance their technological development and competitiveness

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Among its advanced services, CATEC provides technical advice and assistance to encourage the participation of companies in the aerospace industry in programmes and R&D projects, both nationally and internationally. This is a service that our center provides the industry with the aim of improving their competitiveness through technological development and implementation of innovative initiatives that provide greater value to their business.

CATEC has developed this service as a technology partner in various forms of collaboration, especially in promoting the creation of partnerships between Andalusian and Spanish companies that can take advantage of the resources offered by public administrations and entities to drive R&D. From the convocations and programmes of the Government of Andalusia, the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness and the Center for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI), to the European Commission.

Specifically, our Center has considerable experience in working with companies in programmes such as ERDF-Innterconecta, CIEN, the Seventh European Framework Program for Research and Innovation, the new Horizon 2020, or the plans Clean Sky and SESAR, specifically designed for the aerospace sector.

Also, CATEC organizes workshops and informational seminars promote R&D programmes, their characteristics and requirements, and deadlines for submission of proposals, as well as cases of projects developed successfully working with companies in such programmes.

For more information on this service, please contact us via email:

June 30th 2016
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