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


New opportunities for the industry

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After this new channel of communication has been started and knowing that it has been very well accepted by the different agents and actors which compose the Andalusian aeronautical sector, we launch this second edition with the aim of continuing diffusing the initiatives and activities developed by CATEC to support companies to improve their competitiveness and incorporation of new technologies which will contribute to increment and consolidate the aeronautical industry in Andalusia.
And we do so in this occasion focusing on the announcement of CATEC’s services and technological capacities in one of the most  important air shows held at global level, Le Bourget, the appointment par excellence of the European aeronautical sector, where we attend excited and convinced of the great possibilities that this show offers to the Andalusian productive network, not only in terms of getting new contracts which carry out more incomes and more employment for our companies, but also in terms of agreements or strategic alliances for the development of new researching  and innovative projects which can give a bigger added value to the aeronautical activity in Andalusia.
CATEC will be at Le Bourget as the best technological allied for the international aerospace industry and a researching space of excellence pioneer in Europe, that in hardly two years it has become a clear hub in R&D&I projects for the sector, strengthened by two new landmarks for the centre.From one side, the homologation as National Technological Centre from the Ministry of Science and Innovation, a recognition which boosts the centre and that it will allow increase the opportunities of access to regional and national incentives and grants; in other words, to reaffirm its position as pioneer research centre for the sector. And from another side, its recently participation at ICUAS’11, one of the most outstanding global event about unmanned aircrafts, where CATEC scientists have presented the results of the projects developed in Andalusia in this field, remarking its prestigious and researching experience.
Some excellent credentials which shows the huge capacities not only of this centre but also of the aeronautical and aerospace Andalusian sector and  I am sure, with no doubt, they will bring more opportunities of growth and expansion thanks to the appointment in Paris.
There we go, Le Bourget.

June 22nd 2011
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