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


Industrial collaboration support

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As the new Managing Director of FADA CATEC, I have the opportunity of addressing you all taking advantage of this new digital newsletter, which has become one of our main ways to let everybody know about our projects and initiatives carried out from our Foundation and Technological Centre. It has become a very useful tool for the aerospace sector.

And I make it with a strong message of commitment and hard work to continue the support to R&D that our company has been developing for our Andalusian Aerospace Industry since 2008. I’m sure not only by the Innovation and technological development we will keep on contributing to the improvement and competitiveness of our companies. And what’s more important, to keep on positioning our company in the market, in areas of added value called to lead the technological innovation in the world aerospace sector, like unmanned air systems, avionics, robotics or new materials and manufacturing processes.

One sample of that collaboration with the industry can be recently found with the first “CATEC Industry Day”. A meeting to bring closer the latest technologies and improvements developed by our Centre and reinforce the relation with aerospace and technological enterprises, and without any doubt, it has been a complete success of participation and exchange of experiences and knowledge.

There are other examples such as the working day dedicated to new applications with unmanned air systems for inspections and maintenance works in different industrial sectors. Some of them have already been developed by our investigators and experts in the frame of the European Project ARCAS. They are opening the way for new civil uses with this kind of aircrafts.

All of them reflect our commitment in satisfying the requirements and technological needs of the industry, promote cooperation and synergies for the development of new projects and promote technology transfer. To this aim I’ll focus all my efforts as the new Director of FADA. Continuing this way is the key to strength the position of the aerospace andalusian sector as the third aerospace European hub. This way we will be able to aim future business opportunities.

Joaquín Rodríguez Grau
Managing Director of FADA

December 31st 2014
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