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 Regional Minister of Employment, Enterprise and Trade highlights the role that CATEC will play to prepare companies to adapt themselves to the Industry 4.0 concept

Javier Carnero knew first-hand research and technological development lines that our Center addresses to help companies to increase and improve its R&D

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The Regional Minister of Employment, Enterprise and Trade of the Government of Andalusia, Javier Carnero, held last September 13 a visit to CATEC’s facilities to know more about the projects that our center carries out for aerospace. He highlighted its key role to prepare the Andalusian aeronautical industry to the industry 4.0 concept or Factory of the Future concept, referring to new technologies and manufacturing systems already being imposed worldwide.

Javier Carnero was accompanied on his visit by the president of FADA, Antonio Gonzalez Marin, and the director of CATEC, Joaquin Rodriguez Grau, who were explaining the research lines that the center approaches to help the companies in their R&D development.
During his visit, Javier Carnero highlighted that CATEC is the only technology center in Spain dedicated to aerospace sector, which has 60 engineers and doctors working in the most advanced manufacturing technologies for Andalusian industry "not only do not stay behind, but never leave the vanguard in the aeronautical sector worldwide. "

In his words, CATEC is a "clear example" of how public-private partnerships can be a good formula and has assessed that in its nine years of existence has managed leading European research in the sector and in segments such as drones, advanced automation and robotics, developing more than 60 R&D projects with Airbus, other tractor sector companies and Andalusian SMEs.

October 9th 2017
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