CATEC Advanced Center for
CATEC
Innovation & Technology

The world's first 5G network-controlled, beyond-line-of-sight drone flight in a real urban environment, counts on CATEC's technology


January 15th 2021

CATEC has contributed its technology in the development of cloud drone services and has developed the algorithms that allow the use of drones in a cooperative sense, increasing the security of operations.


Rate it

The Spanish city of Benidorm hosted the world's first 5G (non-standalone) network-controlled, beyond visual line of sight drone flight in a real urban environment. This demonstration has been possible thanks to the public-private collaboration between Vodafone, a pioneering company in the deployment of a commercial 5G network in Spain, the Spanish Aviation Safety and Security Agency (AESA), the Benidorm City Council, the Valencia Polytechnic University (UPV) and the Advanced Center for Aerospace Technologies (CATEC).

CATEC has contributed its technology in the development of cloud drone services, in line with Vodafone's concept of “Drone as a service”. Specifically, it has developed the algorithms that allow the use of drones in a cooperative sense, increasing the safety of operations. Thanks to the technology developed by CATEC, the cloud system can detect if two or more drones are very close to each other and vary the flight plan in real time to avoid a possible collision, thus improving its safety and autonomy. In this sense, the low latency of 5G is key to achieve this.

The Andalusian technology center has also collaborated in the implementation of a mobile zones limited to flight system (No Fly Zones) that allow optimizing the use of airspace. In this way, it is possible not only to create a flight limitation zone dynamically, but "move" it in space to follow the movement of, for example, a police vehicle or an ambulance. This drastically reduces the flight limitation only for a specific area in a limited time, optimizing the use of urban airspace as much as possible and facilitating the possibility of developing multiple operations in parallel.

The integration of drones into urban space is one of the main challenges facing the aeronautical sector, and this demonstration in Benidorm has been an important step forward. CATEC continues to advance its research to respond to this challenge thanks also to the iMOV3D project, launched this year and which it coordinates, based on the development and validation of advanced technologies that will facilitate the integration of drones in the urban environment in the next years.



Read 18 times




News | Innovation & Technology | Events | Editorial