Technological milestones to keep on growing

A new year ends and it's time to take stock of the work done and technological milestones achieved by FADA-CATEC in 2017, which confirms one more year the good work we have carried out to foster innovation and technological development in the aerospace sector in general.
 
These results confirm we are one of the most advanced research and technology centers in the sector in Spain and Europe, especially in fields such as robotics, unmanned systems and new advanced manufacturing processes (Factory of the Future, Industry 4.0), in addition to additive manufacturing technology (3D printing). We do not say it, but Administrations and entities with their awards and recognitions have valued this year in a very special way the work and effort that our Center and its researchers, experts and technicians have developed looking for constant technological innovation. A great support to the role that FADA-CATEC plays in the sector, working for R&D to become an indispensable element in our aerospace companies.
 
We are especially proud of the Innovation Radar Prize 2017, granted by the European Commission, and the Jury Innovation Prize of the "EU Drone Awards", collected in the European Parliament, for our latest developments in the field of unmanned robotic systems, which are already a global milestone. Also of the awards of the Andalusian Aerospace Cluster, HELICE, the Academy of Social Sciences and the Environment of Andalusia, or the "Antonio Torres" Prize of the IV National Congress of R&D in Defence and Security , which serve as an incentive to keep on working for innovation and strengthening the competitiveness of our aerospace sector.
 
There are many other important initiatives and technological projects that we have carried out last year, among which I would like to highlight the participation in international robotics competition MBZIRC, in which the team formed by CATEC achieved important results among the best and most prestigious universities and research centers around the world; or the organization of UNVEX ECO-AGRO, the first congress in Spain devoted specifically to the drone sector and its applications in agriculture and the environment, and which is now a national reference. No less relevant was the collaboration on technological milestones as the first drone flight identified, geolocated and controlled through the mobile network, using Vodafone's 4G network and carried out in Seville.
 
In short, it has been a year to be satisfied with the successes achieved and to reaffirm our trajectory in these ten years of life of FADA-CATEC, but also to make us see that only with good work will we be able to achieve the challenges of the aerospace sector, helping our companies and the industry to reach them. For a 2018 full of new projects, Happy New Year!
 
Joaquín Rodríguez Grau
Director of CATEC

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Our Center collaborates with Vodafone in the development of a system to control the flight of drones through the 4G mobile network


CATEC participated in the technological milestone of the first flight in the world with an unmanned aircraft monitored with this system, carried out in Seville


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Our Center collaborates with Vodafone in the development of a system to control the flight of drones through the 4G mobile network
The Center of Network Excellence of the Vodafone Group located in Spain, in collaboration with the Center for Advanced Aerospace Technologies (CATEC) and the Sevillian company Skylife Engineering, have made the first flight in the world of an identified drone, geolocated and controlled through a 4G mobile network beyond the line of sight, carried out in Seville between Isla Mayor and Utrera.
 
The drone, equipped with a SIM data, covered 32 km at low altitude in 25 minutes, controlled and monitored remotely with the Vodafone 4G network which also acted as a radar. The device incorporated a software based on the protocol for unmanned air traffic management. 

This new technological milestone has been possible thanks to the public-private collaboration between Vodafone, the regional Government of Andalusia and other Andalusian companies and entities. In fact, the preliminary flight tests have been carried out in our ATLAS Experimental Flight Center in Jaen. In the same way, CATEC has been in charge of adapting the equipment that takes part of the drone, as well as the software that allows integrating the air system with the Vodafone network; and the Andalusian company Skylife Engineering was in charge of the infrastructure and software for receiving telemetry data, signal levels and position.
 
Francisco Roman, president of Vodafone Spain, and Susana Díaz, president of the Junta de Andalucia, participated in the presentation of the flight.
 
This flight allows laying the foundations so that in the future drones equipped with SIM 4G can be located and controlled remotely using mobile telephone networks. Thus, it would be possible to supervise and land them in case of access to demarcated areas as restricted (airports and aerodromes, military facilities, chemical plants ...), and ultimately the control of the airspace of drones (U-Space). In addition, this solution will make it possible to boost the use of drones safely in different sectors of economic activity such as: logistics, fleet management and transport, agriculture, border surveillance, critical infrastructures, fields in which significant economic growth is expected in the next years. 

Our Center collaborates with Vodafone in the development of a system to control the flight of drones through the 4G mobile network


December 29th 2017
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