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


The EC-SAFEMOBIL project achieves a new technological milestone after reaching the landing of a UAV in a mobile platform

The work has been coordinated by engineers and technicians CATEC and developed in the facilities of ATLAS Flight Test Center

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The EC-SAFEMOBIL project achieves a new technological milestone after reaching the landing of a UAV in a mobile platform
The EC-SAFEMOBIL project, initiative that belongs to the VII Framework Programme for R&D of the European Commission led and coordinated by CATEC and the University of Seville in the field of unmanned aerial systems (UAVs) and robotics, continues advancing its research and has achieved another milestone in this field. The project team has developed in recent days a pilot project which has led to the first landing of an unmanned aircraft on a three dimensions moving platform using a cable and without GPS. This experience paves the way for the implementation of this kind of landing UAS on vehicles such as boats or land vehicles.

Landing tests have been performed on the facilities of ATLAS Flight Test Center for testing unmanned aircraft, ascribed to FADA-CATEC and located in Villacarrillo (Jaén). These are the only facilities in Spain that have been designed specifically to test light unmanned aircraft.

In the following link to our Youtube channel you can see a video about the landing:

The EC-SAFEMOBIL project seeks to develop new technologies of multivehicle cooperation using unmanned aerial systems (UAS), specifically new methods of accurate position estimation and motion control that will make UAS and ground autonomous systems more secure and reliable for a wide range of applications such as disaster management, search and rescue (especially under extreme conditions), security and other missions that involve human risk.

Besides landing an UAV on moving surfaces, the project is developing other new technological demonstrators, such as the launch of an unmanned aerial vehicle from a manned one or tracking several ground vehicles using multiple unmanned aerial systems with the ability to avoid collisions.

The EC-SAFEMOBIL project achieves a new technological milestone after reaching the landing of a UAV in a mobile platform

July 31st 2015
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